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Lakeland Ledger: Journal Rates Ross 15th Most Conservative House Member
By Bill Rufty
Published: Wednesday, February 20, 2013 at 2:46 p.m.
U.S. Rep. Dennis Ross has been ranked by the National Journal as the 15th most conservative member of the House.
The National Journal, a Washington, D.C. publication dealing with politics and government, based its annual rankings on the 2012 voting records of the 435 representatives and 100 senators. The rankings will be published next week.
Last year was Ross’ second year in Congress. The Lakeland Republican was re-elected to a second term without opposition.
Ross actually tied for 15th most conservative House member with Republican U.S. Rep. Steve Chabot of Cincinnati. Both men received a 92.5 percent conservative rating.
“I never really thought of myself as that conservative,” Ross said. “I certainly am fiscally conservative.
“I always try to represent my district, which is conservative, but not radically so,” he said. “I grew up here and I know the makeup of the district.”
Ross was not the most conservative member of the U. S. House from Florida in 2012. Former U.S. Rep. Connie Mack, a Fort Myers Republican, was ranked 13th. Mack lost the 2012 U.S. Senate race to Democratic incumbent Bill Nelson.
In a pre-publication news release, the National Journal stated that it examined all of the roll-call votes in 2012 — 659 in the House and 251 in the Senate. The publication’s staff then identified the votes that show “ideological distinctions” between members.
The National Journal has ranked members of Congress for more than 30 years based on their votes on key issues. The publication says it makes no comment on how members should have voted, only reporting on the votes in an impartial manner.
[ Bill Rufty can be reached at 802-7523 or firstname.lastname@example.org. ]