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Blogs / Influence

A Civil Rights Report Card for Congress

October 11, 2012

Partisan polarization is to blame for little progress on civil rights issues, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights said as it released its vote ratings.

The number of members who supported the conference's position on 90 percent or more of the votes dropped from 196 in the 111th Congress to 168, the group said. Lawmakers were graded on 20 House and 15 Senate votes through September.

On the whole, Democrats scored higher than Republicans, but there were a few standouts: The Democrat in the Senate with the lowest total score is Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada whose score is 83 percent.The Republican with the highest total score is Massachusetts Republican Sen. Scott Brown, with 44 percent.

On the House side, the Democrat with the lowest combined civil rights score (33 percent) and total score (30 percent) is Rep. Dan Boren of Oklahoma. The Republican with the highest score is Rep. Judy Biggert of Illinois with 50 percent in civil rights and total score.

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