The Best Member Of Congress You’ve Never Heard Of– Literally

There are 5 freshmen members of Congress whose voting records are tied for #1. The graphic above shows the 6 members of Congress with the highest lifetime crucial vote scores, according to ProgressivePunch. As you know, 100% is better than 99.9%. 100% means perfect. We all know AOC, Ayanna Pressley and Rashid Tlaib, right? 3 of the 4 members of The Squad. [The 4th Squad member, Ilhan Omar, is tied with Veronica Escobar for the 10th best voting record–97.67%.] Joe Neguse is a freshman from Boulder, Colorado, another deep blue bastion of tolerance. In fact these were Trump’s 2016 election numbers in each district in that top half dozen:

MA-07- Ayanna Pressley- 11.9%

MI-13- Rashida Tlaib- 18.1%

NY-14- AOC- 19.8%

MD-08- Jamie Raskin- 30.6%

CO-02- Joe Neguse- 34.9%

MI-09- Andy Levin- 43.7%

A Democrat can sleepwalk into victory in the first 5 districts– and probably win in the 6th, albeit with a little more effort.

And that 6th district is represented by Andy Levin who you probably never heard of. He’s not getting the kind of national attention The Squad gets, even though he has voted exactly the same as 3 of them:

In fact, if you look more closely– and go beyond just “crucial votes”– Andy has the highest vote score of any member of Congress.

So how come no one outside of his district has ever heard of him? Mostly because he’s too busy doing stuff and working on policy to go on TV or sit for interviews. Even as a teenager he was busy– studying Tibetan and Sanskrit, living in India or Haiti, heading up his school’s anti-apartheid coalition, graduating cum laude as a member of Phi Beta Kappa– and earning a law degree from Harvard. Those who are familiar with him know him as the “union guy” in the House, working to make sure working families get a fair break and a fairer part of the pie. At one time he was director of the AFL-CIO’s program to restore workers’ freedom to form unions, including creating and building grassroots support for the federal Employee Free Choice Act. In his spare time he’s mountain-biking, snowshoeing or trying to get other members of Congress to form an ice-hockey team.

Andy’s literally lived his whole life in the trenches of a wide variety of progressive causes. Talking with him over the last couple of months these are the ones I discovered him working on a dozen priorities:

  • The peace movement
  • The anti-nuclear power movement
  • The anti-nuclear weapons movement
  • The environmental and deep ecology movements
  • The anti-apartheid movement
  • The justice for Central America movement
  • The human rights movement– emphasis on Haiti, China and Tibet
  • The women’s and LGBTQ movements
  • The Jewish social justice movement; justice for Palestinians
  • The clean energy revolution and climate change movement
  • The healthcare for all movement
  • Above all, the labor movement

This is a guy we need to see rise in the ranks of House leadership– which is why Blue America endorsed his reelection and bid and why we’re asking you to consider contributing to his campaign at this link.

In June he was already organizing inside Congress to get impeachment rolling:

In a classic tweet storm, he wrote “After extensive discussion with colleagues on the committees of jurisdiction over various investigations I have concluded that the only way to get to the bottom of Mr. Trump’s activities and inform the public about what we learn is to centralize and expedite the process through one select committee with the focus, power and urgency that come with an impeachment inquiry. I will work to build a consensus in the House Democratic Caucus to begin this process, and I will reach across the aisle to engage Republican colleagues about the urgent need to protect our democracy.”

So, please, when you think of great progressives to support with your hard-earned dollar, remember the guy who works his tail off for us, and doesn’t show up on tv. 

Thanks for always doing what you can to make this a better world,

Howie, for the entire Blue America team


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