NTU Congressional Ratings for the 115th Congress: Improvement, But More Work Needed

National Taxpayers Union (NTU) has released the congressional scorecard for the first session of the 115th Congress, and it’s good news for taxpayers: more pro-taxpayer votes were taken and passed in 2017 than in other recent years, and the number of “Taxpayers’ Friend” awards the organization issues for top-scoring lawmakers out has skyrocketed over 2016 results. While far too many members of Congress are still failing to consistently stand up for the best interests of taxpayers, 2017 was still an important year of progress on many fiscal policy issues.

NTU will be awarding 66 Representatives and 15 Senators with our “Taxpayers’ Friend” awards this year, up from only 15 House members and 3 Senators from our previous ratings. This reflects the number of important, pro-taxpayer bills that were voted on and passed by Congress in 2017 - including the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and important regulatory reforms. At the same time, much work remains to be done. Pro-taxpayer legislation like the Financial CHOICE Act and the American Health Care Act received votes but did not make it out of Congress. So while taxpayers saw a good year, it could have been a great one.

“We’re pleased to be able to announce far more Taxpayers’ Friend awards this year than we did last year,” said Pete Sepp, President of the National Taxpayers Union. “The successful passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act was a massive victory for overburdened Americans who pay government bills, and set the stage for more successes on behalf of simpler taxes, IRS reform, and other pro-taxpayer priorities.”

“We look forward to being able to hand out even more Taxpayers’ Friend awards in the future, but doing so will take a bigger commitment among lawmakers to bring financially unsustainable federal spending programs back under control,” Sepp said.

NTU would like to commend the members of leadership and those who have served as committee chairs in the 115th Congress - Sens. Barrasso, Crapo, Enzi, Risch, and Reps. Scalise, Black, Chabot, Goodlatte, and Hensarling - for their work advocating for taxpayers. Taxpayers need proponents in positions of leadership, and these Members have helped deliver concrete results.

For 38 years, NTU’s Rates Congress has remained the only fiscal policy scorecard to include every roll call vote affecting taxpayers, utilizing a sophisticated evaluation process. This year’s ratings, covering the First Session of the 115th Congress, included 98 Senate and 198 roll-call votes in the House of Representatives that impacted the federal tax, spending, debt, or regulatory burden on taxpayers and consumers.

To speak with the team that led the calculations behind NTU Rates Congress, including NTU President Pete Sepp and NTU Federal Affairs Director Nan Swift, please contact Kevin Glass at 703-683-5700 or kglass@ntu.org.