Heritage Action will grade presidential candidates
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The influential conservative group Heritage Action will rate candidates running for president in 2016 on their policy positions.

Heritage Action, the political branch of the Heritage Foundation, has created a scorecard for candidates that touches on six different areas.


The broad categories candidates will be evaluated on are limited government, national security, favoritism, opportunity, growth and civil society.

“There are probably 10, 12 or 15 people that are interesting candidates, and we want to play a role in urging them to embrace a bold agenda,” Heritage Action head Mike Needham told Politico, who first reported Heritage's plans.

The first scorecard will be issued in September, the month after the first GOP primary debate, Politico reported.

Heritage Action is considering endorsing someone in the race if it feels it could make the difference for a more conservative candidate.

“If we got to a point where we felt there was somebody out there who could really become a leader that would do for conservatism coming out of the Obama presidency what Ronald Reagan did coming out of the Jimmy Carter presidency — and that other people perhaps would take us more in the direction of the big government of President [George W.] Bush or the K Street cronyism of John Boehner — then, certainly, we’d want to not leave tools on the board,” Needham told Politico.

The group already produces a scorecard for lawmakers that is designed to highlight when their votes don’t align with Heritage’s positions.

Such scorecards can be powerful political tools. For example, the National Rifle Association's grades can have a formidable impact on lawmaker races.