SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4) – New scores have been released by the Dignity Index, this time examining Facebook and Twitter posts from Republican incumbent Senator Mike Lee and his Independent opponent Evan McMullin.

After ranking 14 total posts, the two Utah Senate candidates averaged a 4.07 on the Dignity Index. The score falls on the contemptuous side of the eight-point Index scale. This week neither candidate scored higher than six or lower than a three.

Both candidates have seen their overall average Index score drop since the Dignity Index began in early October. Senator Mike Lee has seen his average drop from 4.5 to 4.1 since the first set of scores released while challenger Evan McMullin dropped from a five down to 4.24.

“As we see it, treating others with dignity is a patriotic duty,” Index officials said. “There is no America without democracy. There is no democracy without healthy debate, and there is no healthy debate without dignity.”

A summarized report of this week’s Dignity Index scores can be found below:

U.S. Senate

Mike Lee (R) – AVG 4.1 (Last AVG Reported: 4.14)

  • 4 – In a Facebook Post by Mike Lee, he calls it unfortunate that Congress has been “totally controlled by Democrats that have rubber-stamped Joe Biden’s radical agenda” over the last two years. The Index gives the messaging a FOUR by saying the message gives a tone of “you can’t trust them.” Index officials recommend to make a proposal or commitment to a policy to improve dignity in the post.
  • 4 – Mike Lee tweeted “The government is doing things it was not intended to do” before saying he was grateful to speak with Merit Medical about what he was going to do to “keep the government from interfering with their innovative industry.” The Index says the passage encourages contempt for the government without any argument. The message implies the government is a menace looking to disrupt good deeds, and that encourages contempt, according to the Index.
  • 6 – Lee earned a “clear SIX” by the Dignity Index for a tweet a said the “Us vs. Them” is not true, as Senator Lee has “partnered with Democrats on FISA reform, criminal justice reform, and war powers resolutions, to name a few.” The Index points out the message is a factual dignity-based response to a charge against him by pointing out specific policies to advance specific common aims by working with “the other side.”
  • 3 – One of Lee’s lower scored posts came from Facebook when he said “Utahns can’t afford Democrats’ reckless spending any longer” after listing negative effects of inflation. The Dignity Index says the statement conveys the message “they’re the bad people responsible for all the bad things.”

    To say the message with more dignity, officials with the Index suggest Senator Lee “could make an explicit link between spending and inflation, name the specific spending cuts he would make, and list other steps he would take to reduce inflation.”
  • 3 – An Instagram posted by Lee stated “It’s time for a government that respects you. A Republican majority in Congress is the only way we can get our country back on track.” The Index says the messaging is a THREE, by implying “the government looks down on you,” and that it’s not just the government, “it’s the Democrats who look down on you.”
  • 4 – In what the Dignity Index calls “a classic FOUR,” Lee sent a Tweet that implies “he is not one of us; he is for them.” In the tweet, Lee says McMullin “is running to keep Kamala Harris in charge of a divided U.S. Senate. Democrats endorsed McMullin’s candidacy. Democrats consultants run his campaign.” Lee closed his tweet by saying Utahns can’t afford two more years of a Harris Senate and calls for help to “retake the US Senate.” The Index says this message pounds home “you should not vote for him because he is not one of us.”
  • 4 – The Index says another Lee tweet sends the message of “those people want to take away your freedoms,” and, “they’re not one of us; they’re not working for us; we shouldn’t trust them.” The tweet from Lee read that voters should “not settle for a government that will take away your freedoms. Expect a government that will respect you and protects your liberty. It’s time, my fellow Americans and fellow Utahns, to expect more.”

Evan McMullin (I) – AVG 4.24 (Last AVG Reported: 4.28)

  • 6 – Following his debate with Lee on Oct. 17, McMullin tweeted saying “Utah, I hope tonight left you feeling hopeful. Hopeful that we can protect our democracy. Hopeful that we can heal our nation’s broken politics.” The Index rated McMullin’s message a “defining feature of SIX,” as it cross divides and works with people to find common values and interest to use as a basis for cooperation.
  • 4 – McMullin earned a FOUR after implying in a tweet that Senator Lee “doesn’t care about people and that he’s proud of doing things that make life harder for them,” according to the Dignity Index. The Tweet read, “Mike Lee is so proud of his ‘no’ votes. But I wonder if he’d be so proud if he met the Utahns who have been hurt by those votes?” The Index points out that this messaging says “he’s not working for you; he’s working for them,” which is designed to divide.

    “To make this case with dignity, the message could highlight the vote Senator Lee cast and the effects that has had on people, then promise to vote the other way if elected,” commented the Dignity Index.
  • 3 – The Dignity Index says that a September tweet by McMullin starts with a FOUR but drops to a THREE after a moral character attack. McMullin began the tweet with by saying Lee’s campaign is “bankrolled by special interest groups,” implying “he isn’t for working for you; he is working for them,” a message the Index says is a FOUR. In the same passage, McMullin says “I can’t be bought, I refuse to serve as anybody’s political puppet,” which attacks Lee’s moral character, bringing the passage down to a THREE.
  • 3 – McMullin earned another THREE after a tweet that said, “It is incredibly dangerous when our leaders ignore our founding principles. That’s what Senator Mike Lee did when he bowed down to Trump and worked tirelessly to help overturn a free and fair election. Utahns deserve a leader who will protect our democracy.” The Index called this tweet the “most complicated message to score” in this collection. They say it’s possible to make serious challenges and hold people accountable without contempt. This message uses phrases that ultimately attack Lee’s character by saying “ignore our founding principles,” and “bowed down to Trump,” bringing the overall score down.
  • 3 – An October tweet by McMullin earned a THREE after calling Lee a “reliable yes man” for Russian President Vladimir Putin in the U.S. Senate. The Index points out this is an attack of moral character without pointing to specific decisions, actions, and outcomes or intended outcomes.
  • 4 – A passage from an October McMullin tweet earned a FOUR. The tweet read, “I will not caucus with EITHER party in the U.S. Senate. I know its hard for folks like Ben Shapiro to understand, but true patriots are still ready to put country over party.” The Dignity Index said the message implies “there still are true patriots in the country, there are still people who have the right values, and that’s us, not them.”
  • 6 – Index called a late October tweet from McMullin a “defining feature of SIX” by tweeting “I couldn’t be more proud of the coalition we’ve built here. Republicans, Democrats, and Independents are coming together for the sake of our democratic republic.” The Index says the message encourages togetherness and dignity by taking pride in work with people “on the other side of the a divide.”

For a full report of the Dignity Index scores, visit the Dignity Index website.