64th Assembly Halftime Report: Senate Rankings


Yesterday we posted the rankings for the House of Representatives at the halfway mark of the 64th Assembly. The system for ranking was explained in that post, so I won’t go back through it here. Instead we will jump right into the Senate rankings for the 64th Legislative Assembly

Senate Results

Top Ten

The top ten Senators, based on our scoring system, were:

Rank Party District Name   Total
1 R 3 Larsen 64
2 R 36 Armstrong 57
3 R 10 Miller 49
4 R 33 Unruh 44
5 R 34 Cook 37
6 R 25 Luick 37
7 R 30 Carlisle 36
8 R 38 Hogue 36
9 R 27 Casper 34
10 R 39 Bowman 29

I am not overly surprised, but I also won’t be surprised if this list has very noticeable changes in the second half (along with the other 37 spots). Frankly speaking, the list of  Senate Bills we had to choose from for the ranking were a bit light compared to the House. It will be interesting to see how the Senate rankings adjust as they address a much “edgier” list of legislation from the other chamber.

Bottom Ten

Rank Party District Name   Total
38 D 20 Murphy -12
39 D 18 Triplett -13
40 D 24 Robinson -15
41 D 35 Oban -16
42 D 16 Axness -22
43 D 46 Sinner -22
44 D 23 Heckaman -24
45 D 21 Nelson -24
46 D 42 Schneider -27
47 D 11 Mathern -33

The more liberal Senators (granted, the whole chamber is pretty left leaning as we learned last session — the democrats just don’t bother to hide it) are right about where they were supposed to be. About the only pseudo-surprise is Sen. Oban. Considering she tore a page out of Sen Heitkamp’s campaign playbook by presenting the facade of an independent-thinking, well… independent, her ranking is anything but that.

One (or a Few) of These Things is Not Like The Other

Rank Party District Name   Total
31 D 6 O’Connell 0
32 R 15 Oehlke -2
33 D 26 Dotzenrod -6
34 D 4 Warner -6
35 R 44 Flakoll -9
36 D 9 Marcellais -12
37 D 12 Grabinger -12

I am sure Sens Flakoll and Oehlke will be in good company soon enough. As mentioned previously, the Senate’s “bill diet” is not going to be that bland anymore now that crossover if completed and the “spicier” house bills await. The Senate may not have as much of a palate for the bold flavors many of the House marker bills contain.

The Bell Curve

The below chart gives you a great fell for where each Legislator falls in comparison to each other, and where the “bell” is in the chamber as a whole:



The Full Ranking

The full ranking can be seen below, including some of the factors which drove the final score. Remember, as discussed yesterday the rows won’t add perfectly to that final tally as there is a bunch of between the lines arithmetic


  2015 Senate Halftime by LegitSlater


Senate Marker Bills


HB or HCR Topic First Half Desired Vote
2057 Study on effectiveness of economic development tax incentives Y
2088 Creation of a ND Education Foundation N
2089 ND academic scholarship eligibility N
2090 ND academic scholarship eligibility N
2096 Elimination of sales taxes on internet access Y
2099 Increase amounts for sports pools Y
2108 Lowering age of compulsory school attendence N
2126 Government – funded affordable housing construction appropriation N
2133 Exemption of NDUS student information from open records requests N
2134 Exempting NDUS president evaluations from open records N
2150 Civil Liberties – Univ System Due Process Y
2151 Early Childhood education grants N
2153 Open records exemption for school districts N
2162 Student loan repayment for social workers and addiction counselors N
2165 Handing out $5,000 per child for education N
2174 Govt Overreach – Health Care Study N
2184 Allowing an increase in prize raffles Y
2208 Retail leases and agreements and state holidays N
2210 Establishing regional education associations N
2217 Ending fund balances and reporting requirements Y
2220 Housing incentive fund N
2222 Open Records – Legislative Assembly reporting N
2230 Renters income tax credits N
2247 Annual legislative sessions N
2254 Early childhood education N
2259 Use of experimental drugs for treatments Y
2260 Economic impact grants N
2274 Time limits on Chief Law Enforcement Officer firearms certifications Y
2279 Prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation N
2290 Redefining full time status for state employees N
2299 Campaign contribution conduit reporting Y
2309 Establishing Immigrant Micro Grants N
2310 Grenn energy passthrough entity income tax credits N
2322 Cigarette Tax increase N
2326 Student datamining and SLDS N
2329 Renaissance tax zone size increase N
2330 Allowing student ID’s as voter identification Y
2337 Oil Extraction Tax Exemption Y
2344 Creation of a ND Legacy Foundation N
2351 Easing restrictions on corporate farming Y
2353 Provisional ballots N
2360 Prevention of disclosure of student directory information N
2361 Eminent domain authority of WAWSA Y
2366 Remove authority of the ND Industrial Commission to promote oil industry N
2369 Audits of ballots and voting equipment Y
2378 Income tax credits for “quality of life” projects N
4010 Residency requirements of legislators Y
4011 States rights in education Y
4012 Study on privacy, security, and data sharing laws Y
4022 Election and lobbying law study Y