The results are in, and only a dozen House Democrats have been designated good friends of the manufacturing industry, according to key vote ratings released Monday by the National Association of Manufacturers.
No Senate Democrats enjoyed a 70 percent or higher rating from NAM in the 111th Congress. In all, 221 lawmakers from both chambers got the seal of approval -- clearly skewing Republican.
NAM represents some of the biggest multinational corporations, but also a lot of small-to-midsized domestic firms. Their key positions in the 111th Congress were against health care and climate change legislation, and against raising taxes on multinationals' overseas profits. NAM was in favor of the economic stimulus package, however, as well as a number of measures on the House Democrats' "Make It in America" agenda. The group did not take a position on legislation to stem Chinese currency manipulation.
Rep. Mark Critz, D-Pa., barely squeaked over the 70 percent vote barrier necessary to be given the "NAM Award for Manufacturing Legislative Excellence." But Critz was declared ineligible due to his short tenure -- he was elected on May 18 to replace the late Rep. John Murtha, D-Pa. Two other Democrats on the list, Marion Berry of Arkansas and John Tanner of Tennessee, are retiring.
That leaves about 10 House Democrats who can tout their NAM bona fides back home in the run-up to November 2. As of last week, four of them -- Frank Kratovil of Maryland, Travis Childers of Mississippi, Stephanie Herseth Sandlin of South Dakota, and Glenn Nye of Virginia -- had their races ranked as tossups by Charlie Cook of The Cook Report. Bobby Bright of Alabama, and Lincoln Davis of Tennessee, as well as Critz, were in the "Lean Democratic" category, while seats held by John Barrow of Georgia, Tim Holden of Pennsylvania, and Mike Ross of Arkansas are considered "Likely Democratic" on Cook's chart of competitive races.