Accountability 101: How’s Your Legislator Performing?

Here is the cumulative list of all MichiganVotes "Weekly Roll Call Report" votes for 2011These will be updated on a regular basis, and a new version started in 2012.

Every week sends these reports to newspapers around the state, showing how just the state representatives and senators in their service area voted during the past week. They focus on the most politically revealing votes (what they do vs. what they say), plus the most important votes on matters of policy, and some that are just interesting. A cumulative list of all these votes is a useful reference source, if not a fully comprehensive one.

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When scanning these votes, citizens should know that Republicans currently have a 26-12 majority in the state Senate, and 63-47 in the state House. The most politically revealing votes for accountability purposes are where some Republicans or some Democrats "break ranks" with their party; unanimous or party-line votes are much less revealing.

Partway through this year, the weekly reports posted on (which being for a statewide audience do not include local legislators’ votes) began including links directly to each full roll call vote (see “Who Voted ‘Yes’ and Who Voted ‘No’”). Earlier in the year, the bill numbers were hot-links to a page with all legislative actions on the particular bill, among which are the links to “Who Voted ‘Yes’ and Who Voted ‘No.’"

To find out who your state senator is and how to contact him or her go here; for state representatives go here.

To create your own “scorecard” spreadsheet showing the votes of all legislators — along with a score generated by what you tell the site was the correct vote — go to “create a (free) account” on MichiganVotes, and when you log-on to it, go to “Update scorecards” in the drop-down menu that appears when holding the cursor over your username on the blue navigation bar.