2016 Presidential Candidate Project: Governor Activity

Here are the parameters around the Governor metrics:

1) All governor statements, resolutions, and bills that were notably featured on Project Vote Smart (referred hereafter collectively as “notable governor activities”) were considered.

2) As with the U.S. Congress results, all notable governor activities about abortion (from all angles) were excluded. (Candidates’ records on abortion are easily accessible and widely reported.)

3) As with the U.S. Congress results, since all the presidential candidates that served as governors either served at different time periods or for different durations, the most accurate time average seemed to be the following: the most recent and full three years that the candidate served as governor. For Chris Christie and John Kasich, this was 2013-2015. For Jeb Bush, this was 2004-2006.

4) As with the U.S. Congress results, all notable governor activities that would, in their minds, specifically and actively contribute to child advocacy and victim/survivor advocacy were included. This means that I included notable governor activities that I personally believe actually harmed children or victims/survivors.

5) To find all notable governor activities that purported to specifically and actively contribute to child advocacy and victim/survivor advocacy, I used Project Vote Smart. I utilized their “Political Summary” section to track each governor’s notable activities with relation to the same categories used for the U.S. Congress results. All Notable governor activities were included provided they fit within one of these categories: child care, development, education, and safety; child abuse; children’s rights; domestic violence; elder abuse; physical abuse; safety measures in general such as background checks and mandatory reporting; sexual abuse; trafficking (all kinds). The results were then additionally filtered by the chosen, aforementioned time period for each governor.

6) Unlike the U.S. Congress results, some candidates’ voting records were included in these results — if, and only if, they were notably featured on Project Vote Smart.


Jeb Bush (2004-2006)


Florida Youth Substance Abuse Survey

New Technology to Track Sex Offenders and Predators

Education Reform Proposals for Public Schools

Support for Teen Trendsetters and Florida Mentoring Partnership

Creation of New Commission for Charter Schools

A++ Plan for Education Bill

Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday Bill

Federal Foster Care Waiver

Governor’s State Leadership Commission for Reducing Underage Drinking

Middle and High School Reform Measures

Black History Month in Schools

$239 Million Initiative to Recruit and Retain Teachers


Season’s Readings State Agency Holiday Children’s Book Drive

Plan to Assist Schools Impacted by Hurricane Wilma

Hispanic Heritage Month in Schools

Points of Light Award to VolunteerLEON Youth Corps

Points of Light Award to Fort Myers High School Student Government Association

Just Read, Florida! Leadership Conference

Legislation Strengthening Florida’s Child Support System

Jessica Lunsford Act To Strengthen Penalties For Sexual Assault Against Children


KidCare Funding

Chris Christie (2013-2015)




Jessica Lunsford Act To Strengthen Penalties For Sexual Assault Against Children

Statement Against Human Trafficking in New Jersey


$44 Million “Race To The Top” Early Learning Challenge Grant To Improve Early Childhood Education

Ban on the practice of gay conversion therapy on minors

Human Trafficking Prevention, Protection and Treatment Act

Autism Awareness Month

Education Reform Agenda for Failing Camden Schools

Budgetary Support to Strengthen Critical Programs to Support Children and Families in Need

Budgetary Support to Strengthen Programs to Empower New Jersey’s Most Vulnerable Citizens and Provide Critical Health Services

NJ SAFE Task Force to Act on Violence Prevention with Comprehensive Review of the Intersection of Gun Control, Addiction, Mental Health and School Safety Issues

John Kasich (2013-2015)


Charter School Reform Bill

Proposal to increase the income ceiling for assistance for child care from 200 to 300 percent of the poverty line

Commitment to invest in early childhood mental health and crisis services for families


Efforts to Combat Infant Mortality

Maternal Opiate Medical Support (M.O.M.S.) Initiative

Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome Awareness Week

Community Connector School Mentoring Program

Support for proposals to improve K-12 education, and provide new help for Ohioans with mental illness

Public Awareness Campaign to Stop Human Trafficking

Youth Drug Abuse Prevention Initiative, “Start Talking!”


Provisions to to Expunge Record of Human Trafficking Victim

Human Trafficking Awareness Campaign

Candidates this metric does not apply to

Ben Carson

Chris Christie

Hillary Clinton

Ted Cruz

Carly Fiorina

Marco Rubio

Donald Trump


Jeb Bush: 21

John Kasich: 12

Chris Christie: 10

Highest performer(s) of metric: Jeb Bush

Lowest performer(s) of metric: Chris Christie