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The Madison Performance Index

There’s a lot of sleight of hand in politics. The vast majority of voters are never quite sure if their Member of Congress is living up to campaign promises. While there are a lot of great legislative scorecards out there, it is hard sometimes to make them relevant.

That’s where the Madison Performance Index comes in. It is a simple formula that takes a Member’s composite legislative score from the three top scorecards (Conservative Review, Heritage Action for America and the Club for Growth) and then bumps that score up against a Member’s Cook PVI number.

The latter provides us the best available standard to create a baseline for Congressional performance. Is it perfect? No. Does it take into account ideological leanings? No. It’s just a pure partisan breakdown of each district and state nationwide.

However, with those two components in place, we are able to create a Performance Index that attempts to answer the simple question: does my Member match up to my district?

In the case of many Republican Members of Congress, the answer is a resounding, “No.”

Why is this important? Because conservatives are not taking advantage of the “safe” Republican districts and running candidates who can represent the full spectrum conservatism that those R+13 districts can bear.  These are the districts where the winners of the primaries win the general elections virtually 100% of the time.

The Madison Performance Index is a tool that we hope a lot of people-voters, donors, candidates-use to set the stage for electoral victory.