Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Liberal Bias in Academia? The AAUW

Gary Fouse

There have been a lot of reports of surveys in recent years showing the liberal bias and political leanings (Democrat) of university professors. Here is one to add to the list. While waiting for my class to begin yesterday at UC Irvine, I picked up a copy of the American Association of University Women from a campus news rack. The issue was dedicated to the voting record of the 113th Congress, which covers the period January 2013-August 2014. If you go to the first link, you can download (second link) the voting records of each member of the Senate and House of Representatives as to 9 particular issues that the AAUW has interest in. A plus mark indicates that the politician has voted favorably on the issue (according to AAUW), while a minus sign indicates the opposite. In addition, each person is given a score from 0-100, one hundred being highest according to the scale. Obviously, a score above 50 is favorable while a score below 50 is unfavorable.

You will note that in most every case, Republicans scored below 50 while Democrats scored above 50. This pretty much tells you the leanings of the AAUW. At the first link you can also view past ratings.

In addition, I have highlighted some of the narrative in the second link to give you a flavor of the leanings of the AAUW.

"President Barack Obama’s second term started with an ideologically divided Congress, unwilling or unable to move legislation in the most basic policy areas. The president was forced to play a more visible role in defending key priorities such as health care, immigration reform, and judicial nominations, which became targets for congressional obstruction and even repeal". 

"The House of Representatives was more productive than the Senate in the volume of legislation moved forward, but the chamber largely focused on Tea Party priorities rather than moving more moderate proposals that might have had a chance of garnering Senate support and eventually being signed into law. For an example of this posturing, look no further than the 18 House votes that have been taken to repeal the Affordable Care Act in the 113th Congress, increasing the total number of House repeal votes to 54 in the past four years."

"As partisan gridlock and bickering have stalled congressional legislation, President Obama and his cabinet have grown increasingly frustrated with the lack of dialog and progress. During his first Cabinet meeting of 2014, the president made it clear that he would take action where Congress did not, stating, “We’re not just going to be waiting for legislation in order to make sure that we’re providing Americans the kind of help they need. I’ve got a pen and I’ve got a phone.”24 He was referring to his power to issue executive orders, which, while limited in scope, could be used to advance his agenda. The president also promised to ensure additional regulatory guidance and reform, creating inter-agency task forces on critical policy issues, clarifying the rules underpinning a variety of laws, and providing stronger road maps for enforcement." 

I think you get the flavor.


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