2021-2022 NH Democracy Legislative Scorecard

ODA's NH Democracy Legislative Scorecard is a tool for YOU, voters and community members, to hold your elected officials accountable. 

The Scorecards are divided by county, and within each you will see how your NH Senators, Representatives, and Governor voted on a slate of democracy-related bills.

Who is my Senator? Click HERE.

Who is my Representative? Click HERE.

 

NH Senate Scorecard


Belknap County


Carroll County


Cheshire County


Coos County


Grafton County


Hillsborough County


Merrimack County


Rockingham County


Strafford County


Sullivan County

 

What bills were included in the Scorecard?

Money in Politics Bills:

HB263 - This bill repeals voluntary expenditure limits, increases the expenditure and contribution reporting threshold for all political entities, and modifies the maximum contribution amount a person may contribute to candidate committees and political committees. This bill also increases the dollar threshold for reporting by political committees. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted AGAINST this bill. Elected officials who voted AGAINST HB263 voted to decrease the influence of money in politics and limit the power of wealthy donors in campaigns.

SB302 - This bill prohibits public agencies and public bodies from releasing any list, record, register, registry, roll, roster, or other compilation of data of any kind that directly or indirectly identifies a person as a member, supporter, volunteer, or donor of any entity exempt from federal income tax under section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code except in specific circumstances, as well as penalties for the unlawful release of such information. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted AGAINST this bill. Elected officials who voted AGAINST SB302 voted to maintain transparency in campaign contributions through the above-listed entities.

 

Voting Bills:

SB89 - Omnibus bill related to election procedures. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted AGAINST this bill.

SB54 - Requires absentee ballot request forms include lines for identity information of person requesting the form, such as driver's license number or last digits of social security. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted AGAINST this bill, because the bill asks more information of a person voting absentee than those voting in-person.

HB292 - Changes language on the absentee ballot envelope. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted AGAINST this bill, because the bill changes language on the absentee ballot envelope that might cause voters to incorrectly fill out the envelope.

SB418 - Creates a provisional ballot system for New Hampshire. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted AGAINST this bill. The provisional ballot system removes ballot privacy for those casting the provisional ballot, makes it likely overseas military will be disenfranchised because they may not receive their ballots between Primary and General Elections in time to return them, and it adds a layer of complexity to voting that makes it less likely newly registered voters will cast their votes and have those votes counted.

 

Redistricting Bills:

HB121 - A bill to establish an independent redistricting commission. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted FOR this bill. Currently, NH Senators and Representatives create new voting districts every 10 years after the census to balance the districts based on population changes. This means that every 10 years, new districts are drawn by the very people who have the strongest interest in creating easily-winnable districts. An independent redistricting commission would ensure fair maps are drawn, by removing this conflict of interest.

SB80 - A bill to establish an independent advisory commission on redistricting. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted FOR this bill. Currently, NH Senators and Representatives create new voting districts every 10 years after the census to balance the districts based on population changes. This means that every 10 years, new districts are drawn by the very people who have the strongest interest in creating easily-winnable districts. An independent redistricting commission would ensure fair maps are drawn, by removing this conflict of interest.

HB50 - Redistricting map for the NH Representatives districts. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted AGAINST this bill. These districts were gerrymandered for partisan advantage, and 14 towns were denied districts and therefore representation they were constitutionally eligible for.

HB52 - Redistricting map for NH's federal Congressional districts. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted AGAINST this bill. These districts were gerrymandered for partisan advantage, giving both major parties an advantage in one of the districts.

SB240 - Redistricting map for NH Senate districts. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted AGAINST this bill. These districts were also gerrymandered for partisan advantage, so much so that even if the vote is split between the two major parties, one party will win enough seats for a veto-override supermajority.

SB241 - Redistricting map for NH Executive Council districts. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted AGAINST this bill. These districts were also gerrymandered for partisan advantage.

SB200(A) - Redistricting map for NH's federal Congressional districts. ODA gave elected officials a green check in voting FOR democracy if they voted AGAINST this bill. These districts were gerrymandered for partisan advantage, giving both major parties an advantage in one of the districts.

Analysis of all redistricting maps available at: https://www.opendemocracyaction.org/maps

 

Scoring methodology

There are five scoring categories:

  • Voted for democracy: Elected officials who voted FOR democracy are officials who voted, depending on the bill, to either limit the influence of money in politics, protect the freedom to vote, or to create fair redistricting maps.
  • Voted against democracy: Elected officials who voted AGAINST democracy are officials who voted, depending on the bill, to either increase the influence of money in politics, restrict the freedom to vote, or to create unfair redistricting maps.
  • Excused absence: These officials were not present for a vote, and had an excuse for their absence.
  • Not voting: These officials were not present for a vote, and did not give an excuse for their absence. Or they were present, but chose to skip the vote on a particular bill. 
  • No Vote: These officials resigned, passed away while in office, or are the officials who got voted into office to fill a vacancy.

Why some bills and not others?

There are three types of votes taken by the legislature. Only the roll call vote tracks how individual legislators vote.

Roll Call Votes: For an important vote where the public is watching carefully, roll call votes put each legislator on the record as voting for or against a bill.  Roll call votes give us the most information as to who is, and is not, supporting democracy legislation. These votes are the basis for our ODA Scorecard.  

Voice Votes: Voice votes are typically taken when a vote is not controversial and not expected to be close.  The chair makes a determination from the front of the room as to whether there are more Yeas than Nays, and if it's too close to call, a roll call or division vote may be requested.  These votes do not put legislators on the record, and are NOT included in our scorecard.

Division Votes: If a bill is close, or particularly contentious, a division vote might be taken.  Unlike a voice vote, every vote is counted, but not tied to a particular legislator.   This gives cover to legislators who might vote for a bill that his or her constituents might not like, or where that legislator might vote against the party's position. These votes do not put legislators on the record though, and are NOT included in our scorecard.

Previous Years: 2019-2020 Scorecard

 


Showing 1 reaction

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.
  • Steve Varnum
    published this page 2022-08-05 12:33:36 -0400