There are many organizations that exist who rate elected officials based on any number of positions: the NRA, AFL-CIO, NEA, and the Center for Freedom and Prosperity, to name a few. These are openly partisan organizations who support a specific position to benefit a specific group of people. They provide value to their members by helping them vote for candidates who align with their positions. If you are a union member, voting based on the AFL-CIO report card makes perfect sense. But not every union position benefits everybody that is not in the union. Similarly, not every position taken by the NRA benefits everybody that does not care for gun ownership.
When we chose which report cards we were going to utilize as part of our rankings on voting records, we took a hard look at organizations whose records have a long history of non-partisanship and whose “positive” ratings are overwhelmingly in the public good. Some of these positions we may not personally do not agree with, but RI Rank is not and will never be about what its ownership agrees with. We are defined by our credibility and that means publishing this information regardless of whether it makes progressives or conservatives look good or bad, and whether or not we agree with it. Our only goal is accountability: if you are working to make Rhode Island a better place and being responsive to your constituents, we want everyone to know. If you are failing miserably, we want everyone to see that as well.
Since we have already compiled our rankings for all of the unreleased metrics that we’ll publishing over the next 2 months, we are quite confident that both Democratic and Republican voters will see information that contrasts with their existing beliefs and opens eyes. In the meantime, thanks so much for your support in helping RI Rank raise the accountability of our elected officials.