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Wisconsin GOP lawmakers ranked 2nd most conservative in nation by CPAC

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Wisconsin’s Republican state lawmakers have been declared the “second most conservative in the nation” by the Conservative Political Action Conference’s Center for Legislative Accountability.

State rankings provided Wednesday by CPAC indicate that Wisconsin’s legislative Republicans received an average conservative rating of 91.5%, which trails only Florida, where GOP lawmakers voted “for conservative principles a staggering 96% of the time.”

“The gallant work of Wisconsin Republican lawmakers to block the radical agenda of Gov. Tony Evers has placed the delegation as the second most conservative in the nation,” the conservative conference said in a statement.

The rankings are based on how lawmakers vote in 186 policy areas ranging from cultural and life issues to tax, fiscal and regulatory policies.

The latest rankings came just before Republicans in the Legislature were preparing to reject a special session called by Evers seeking to repeal Wisconsin’s abortion ban, an 1849 law that’s remained on the books but has sat dormant since the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision. Evers, a Democrat, called on the Legislature to take up the repeal as the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule this month in a case that could end Roe v. Wade and allow Wisconsin’s ban to go back into effect.

While Evers has the power to call special sessions, the GOP-controlled Legislature does not have to take action on any legislation during the session. The Legislature has rejected Evers’ special sessions on gun control, distributing $150 checks to Wisconsinites and expanding Medicaid.

According to the center’s ratings, 15 of Wisconsin’s 21 GOP state Senators hold conservative ratings of 90% or more. Fifty-six of the Assembly’s 58 Republicans received a conservative rating of at least 90%.

Among Republicans, Senate President Chris Kapenga, R-Delafield, rated highest in conservative rankings at 95%, while Sen. Robert Cowles, R-Green Bay, ranked the lowest with 76%.

In the Assembly, Reps. Scott Krug, of Nekoosa, Warren Petryk, of the town of Washington, Shae Sortwell, of Two Rivers, and Gary Tauchen, of Bonduel, rated highest with 96%. Rep. Chuck Wichgers, R-Muskego, rated the lowest with 82%.

All told, Wisconsin’s Senate saw its Republican average drop by 4 percentage points since last year to 89%, while the Assembly climbed by 8 points to 92%, according to the rankings.

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