Lawmakers make naughty, nice list

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by MARTIN BARTLETT / KVUE News

kvue.com

Posted on December 21, 2009 at 6:00 PM

AUSTIN -- Children will have to wait until Friday to find out of they're on Santa’s naughty or nice list, some state lawmakers found out Monday morning.

“Santa's got his list of all the good boys and girls who did a good job for Texas,” said an actor portraying Santa Clause at the request of Americans for Prosperity, a conservative group that touts low taxes and small government.

The group tracked more than a dozen votes during the 81st Legislative Session on key issues from smoking bans to eminent domain to come up with the list.

The votes were designed only to measure which legislators agree with the organization’s stances.  

"I have friends on the naughty list, so there is nothing personal about this,” said AFP-Texas Director Peggy Venable.

State Sen. Kirk Watson, and state representatives Dawnna Dukes, Elliott Naishtat and Eddie Rodriguez -- all Democrats -- made the naughty list, receiving a "D" or an "F.”

No Austin area legislators made the nice list.

In fact, statewide, no Democrats got an "A" or a "B" from the organization.

Members of the Austin delegation fared better in the best-and-worst list released over the summer by Texas Monthly magazine; It listed both Republicans and Democrats among the best and the worst.

Journalist Abby Rapaport, who helped compile that list, says for any list of legislators to be useful, readers have to understand it's just a subjective snap-shot.

"There's always several think-tanks on several sides of the spectrum who are putting out their own lists or rankings,” she said. “I think if you take a couple you have a much better picture than if you're just looking at the one."

The offices of members of the Travis County delegation were closed for the holidays.

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