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Ideology scores for the Utah Senate, 2007

Political scientists have developed advanced algorithms that can calculate each legislator's ideology score based on his or her legislative voting record, called a NOMINATE score (it's an acronym, hence the caps). Usually these scores are used to study Congress. They are difficult and time-consuming to calculate, so they are not available for most states. As part of my research, I calculated scores for Utah legislators. Important caveats:

  1. Ideology scores have no scale. There is not a number that means "liberal." Scores only have relative meaning. A lower score is more liberal than a higher score.
  2. Scores are only comparable within a single chamber, within a single year. You cannot compare House scores to Senate scores, and you cannot compare 2010 scores to 2011 scores. (That's because of caveat #1: Scores have no scale.)
  3. Zero does not mean "moderate," it just means "the middle of this group of legislators." Since Utah's legislature is very conservative, the most moderate Utah legislators would seem very conservative on a national scale. Even scores below 0 probably indicate a pretty conservative legislator in these scores.

You can find a thorough discussion of these ideology scores at the Utah data points blog.

The scores below are for 2007 in the Utah Senate. Select a different year here:
House: - 2007 - 2008 - 2009 - 2010 - 2011 - 2012 - 2013 - 2014 - 2015 - 2016 - 2017
Senate: - 2007 - 2008 - 2009 - 2010 - 2011 - 2012 - 2013 - 2014 - 2015 - 2016 - 2017

Distribution of scores

The plot below summarizes how many legislators fall into each score range. There is one "D" for each Democrat in the given range, and one "R" for each Republican. There are 29 legislators in the Utah Senate.

 -100 to -90 | DDD
-90.1 to -80 | DD
-80.1 to -70 | 
-70.1 to -60 | DDD
-60.1 to -50 | 
-50.1 to -40 | 
-40.1 to -30 | 
-30.1 to -20 | R
-20.1 to -10 | R
  -10.1 to 0 | RRR
   0.1 to 10 | R
  10.1 to 20 | RRR
  20.1 to 30 | RR
  30.1 to 40 | RRR
  40.1 to 50 | R
  50.1 to 60 | R
  60.1 to 70 | R
  70.1 to 80 | 
  80.1 to 90 | RR
 90.1 to 100 | RR

Detailed ideology data

If you use this data in published work, please credit me appropriately.

Legislator Party Chamber Year Ideology score
McCoy, Scott D. D Senate 2007 -99.4
Romero, Ross I. D Senate 2007 -97.0
Jones, Patricia W. D Senate 2007 -93.3
Fife, Fred J. D Senate 2007 -89.1
Mayne, Ed D Senate 2007 -80.7
Goodfellow, Brent H. D Senate 2007 -68.6
Davis, Gene D Senate 2007 -66.5
Dmitrich, Mike D Senate 2007 -61.1
Hillyard, Lyle W. R Senate 2007 -23.8
Knudson, Peter C. R Senate 2007 -11.2
Bell, Gregory S. R Senate 2007 -7.9
Walker, Carlene M. R Senate 2007 -7.9
Greiner, Jon J. R Senate 2007 -2.3
Van Tassell, Kevin T. R Senate 2007 1.3
Bramble, Curtis S. R Senate 2007 12.0
Eastman, Dan R. R Senate 2007 12.9
Stowell, Dennis E. R Senate 2007 13.9
Valentine, John L. R Senate 2007 21.5
Killpack, Sheldon L. R Senate 2007 22.7
Christensen, Allen M. R Senate 2007 31.8
Hickman, John W. R Senate 2007 39.8
Niederhauser, Wayne L. R Senate 2007 39.9
Peterson, Darin G. R Senate 2007 46.7
Buttars, D. Chris R Senate 2007 52.3
Waddoups, Michael G. R Senate 2007 62.6
Jenkins, Scott K. R Senate 2007 83.0
Stephenson, Howard A. R Senate 2007 87.9
Madsen, Mark B. R Senate 2007 94.1
Dayton, Margaret R Senate 2007 97.8