WASHINGTON D.C. – On the campaign trail in 2018, Jared Golden presented himself as a moderate Democrat, often latching on to populist issues to gain support. He suggested he would be a Democrat that would work with President Trump on some issues while opposing him on others. When looking at his voting record, a new analysis suggests Rep. Golden has not followed through on that approach in his votes.
A new analysis from FiveThirtyEight, a website famous for tracking political and non-political data, says Rep. Golden’s voting record is showing a lot more anti-Trump votes than their model predicts, and more than most of Golden’s colleagues who are on similar footing as Golden is.
stands in stark contrast to the model’s “Predicted Score”, which predicts how
often Golden is expected to vote with Trump if voting in line with his district
based on 2016 election results. The “Predicted Score” laid out for Golden says
he would vote with President Trump 63.5% of the time.
disparity gives Jared Golden, a freshman Congressman in a district President
Trump won by ten percentage points, a “Trump plus-minus” score of -54.4. That
score is one of the worst in the entire United States Congress behind a small
coalition of Democrats from mostly liberal enclaves that appear to be intent on
opposing the President on every vote.
When viewed through the FiveThirtyEight ‘Trump plus-minus’ score, Golden ranks as having the seventh worst voting record in the entire U.S. House. That same ranking shows Golden is ninth worst among all Representatives who have served in the U.S. House during the Trump era.
Golden’s voting record strictly along the lines of how often Golden supports
Trump’s position on the issue, Golden’s 9.1% score ties him with Minnesota
Representative and “Squad” member Rep. Rashida Tlaib and it puts Golden just
ahead of Rep. Maxine Waters who carries an 8.0% score.
Rep. Tlaib has
recently been selling “Impeach the MF” t-shirts to fund her campaign
re-election account and Rep. Waters has called for President Trump to be
arrested and thrown in solitary confinement.
Among the 31
Democrats in the U.S. House that won seats carried by President Trump in 2016,
only six have a worse Trump plus-minus score than Golden.
strictly looking at the twenty-three freshman Democrats in the U.S. House that
represent districts carried by President Trump, Jared Golden ranks sixth worst
in the Trump plus-minus score.
Democrats in the House with a worse Trump plus-minus than Jared Golden’s -54.4
Brindisi of New York (-72.7)
Joe Cunningham of South Carolina (-69.6)
Kendra Horn of Oklahoma (-67.1)
Max Rose of New York (-57.7)
Xochitl Torres Small of New Mexico (-55.8)
Matt Cartwright of Pennsylvania (-55.7)
currently tracked in the score number more than fifty votes of consequence,
from Golden’s recent vote to support the impeachment inquiry against President
Trump to votes earlier this year on the federal government’s two-year budget,
funding for border security and more.
notable issues where Golden voted in agreement with President Trump were an
early vote on impeachment, which Golden then reversed with his vote to start an
impeachment inquiry on October 31. Other votes where Golden supported President
Trump’s position included a two-year budget bill, two different gun bills
related to background checks and a bill to hold the U.S. Attorney General and
Secretary of Commerce in contempt.
A few of the approximately fifty issues Golden is noted for voting against President Trump’s position include:
-Repeatedly voting to provide funding for the government without any funding for a border wall.
-A bill that would provide members of Congress millions of dollars in taxpayer funding for their political campaigns. That bill also changed some ethics laws.
-A condemnation of the Trump administration for challenging the constitutionality of Obamacare.
-A bill to block President Trump from withdrawing the U.S. from the Paris agreement on Climate Change.
-Bans on drilling in parts of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and part of the Gulf of Mexico.
-Opposing President Trump’s withdrawal of American troops from Syria.
By way of comparison, Rep. Golden’s 9.1% “Trump Score” is actually worse than that of Rep. Chellie Pingree. Pingree, who represents Maine’s more liberal First Congressional District has a “Trump Score” of 12.2%. The model ranks Pingree more than 40 places higher than Golden in aligning with their district on voting with Trump.
Jared Golden became a member of Congress despite placing second in a four way race on election night in 2018. He was declared the winner after Maine’s ranked-choice voting process was used to tabulate new results, allowing the ballots of some voters who voted for lower ranking candidates to vote again until a winner was declared.
Despite the claims of ranked-choice voting supporter that RCV would produce “majority” winners in elections with three or more candidates, Golden was declared the winner without ever receiving a majority of the votes cast in the election.