No, I didn’t fall and hit my head last weekend — I’m well aware that Michele Bachmann ended her presidential campaign half a year ago and that Mitt Romney announced Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan as his running mate on Saturday. But as a disturbing post on the Raw Story today points out, Romney’s selection of Ryan indicates that while Bachmann herself may have exited the presidential stage, her particularly frightening brand of right-wing extremism remains front and center:
Rep. Paul Ryan is the most ideologically far-from-center vice presidential nominee since at least 1900, according to one statistical analysis of historical Congressional voting records.
Based on the DW-NOMINATE model, Ryan’s record makes him the most extreme nominee from either party during that stretch, meaning he is not only ranked as more conservative than any past GOP vice presidential nominee, but also as further from center than any Democratic number two over that same stretch.
That ranking system analyzes all the roll call votes cast by members of Congress and computes a weighted average of how conservatives or liberal elected representatives are based on those votes. For example, the system pegs Congressional Progressive Caucus co-chair Raul Grijalva (D-NM) as the ninth-most liberal member of the House, while Ron Paul (R-TX) ranks as the second-most conservative member (Rep. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) barely beat out Paul for the title of most conservative.)
Ryan, meanwhile, falls well into the conservative end of the spectrum. In fact, the ranking system puts him just four slots closer to center than Tea Party crusader Michele Bachmann.” (emphases added)
tics ticks away from Michele Bachmann? The fact that Ryan and Bachmann are ideological bedfellows sends chills up my spine as an LGBT person, given what we know about her family’s dangerously anti-LGBT views and business practices as well as his appallingly anti-gay voting record in Congress.
Just how closely do Ryan’s beliefs mirror Bachmann’s? Does he, like his colleague and fellow Tea Party darling from Minnesota, endorse dangerous and fraudulent “pray away the gay” therapy? America deserves to know.