Rep. Beto O'Rourke (D-Texas), who some Democrats want to run for president, has a voting record that contradicts his portrayal as a Democratic standard-bearer that can lead the party in complete opposition to President Donald Trump, according to Capital & Main.
During his six years in Congress, representing one of the most liberal districts in the nation, O'Rourke cast 167 votes in opposition to the majority of House Democrats. That puts him in the top 20 percent of all lawmakers in voting against the majority of his own party.
Additionally, a review of his voting record shows that O'Rourke voted in line with the Trump administration's position about 30 percent of the time, which FiveThirtyEight determined is higher than would be expected based on the political demographics of his district.
At times, O'Rourke has voted with Republicans on issues of immigration, taxes, trade, criminal justice, and healthcare, sometimes hindering the Democratic Party's efforts to stop the Republican agenda or prevent Republicans from reversing Obama-era legislative accomplishments.
The specifics of O'Rourke's voting record are usually not mentioned by those touting the Texas Democrat as a 2020 presidential contender. Instead, supporters focus on his charisma and the effectiveness of his campaign in fundraising and pushing Republican incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz in a close race.
Some examples of O'Rourke's voting record include:
- Being one of the only House Democrats to vote twice to lift the oil export ban
- Voting in favor of waiving the polygraph requirement for Customs and Border Patrol agents and job applicants
- Voting with Republicans twice to eliminate the Independent Payment Advisory Board (referred to by some Republicans as a "death panel" created by the Affordable Care Act)
- Voting in favor of Republican tax cuts proposed months after GOP tax reform was passed into law