On December 12, the U.S. House passed the Ryan-Budget compromise budget resolution, HJR 59. The measure passed easily, by a vote of 332-94. Seven members did not vote and there are two vacancies. Among the members of the House who voted, only 22.1% voted “No.” Some of the “no” votes were cast by Democrats who believe the bill stifles worthy spending, and some of the “no” votes were cast by Republicans who believe the bill spends too much. The media tends to support the idea that both types of opposition are “extreme”; no such opinion should be inferred from this blog post.
Among members of Congress from open primary states, 23.0% voted “No.” Among members from closed primary states, 19.6% voted “No.” Among members from semi-closed primary states, 28.9% voted “No.” Among members from top-two states, 17.4% voted “No.”
Opponents of closed primaries constantly express a belief that closed primaries yield more extreme politicians, yet in this vote, as in recent similar roll-call votes, open primaries seem more like to produce “extreme” politicians. Here is the roll-call vote.
All six of Washington state’s Democrats voted for the bill, which lowered the percentage of “no” votes from top-two states. Chances are not all of the Washington Democrats would have voted for the bill, except for the fact that U.S. Senator Patty Murray, a Democrat from Washington state, put her prestige on the line as the Democrat who negotiated the compromise, and her fellow Democrats from her home state wanted to support her.