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Sen. Bernard “Bernie” Sanders

Senator for Vermont

pronounced ber-NAHRD // SAN-derz

Sanders is the junior senator from Vermont and is an Independent caucusing with the Democrats. He has served since Jan 4, 2007. Sanders is next up for reelection in 2018.

He was previously the representative for Vermont’s at-large district as an Independent caucusing with the Democrats from 1991 to 2006.

Photo of Sen. Bernard “Bernie” Sanders [I-VT]

Analysis

Legislative Metrics

Read our 2017 Report Card for Sanders.

Ideology–Leadership Chart

Sanders is shown as a purple triangle in our ideology-leadership chart below. Each dot is a member of the Senate positioned according to our liberal–conservative ideology score (left to right) and our leadership score (leaders are toward the top).

The chart is based on the bills Sanders has sponsored and cosponsored. See full analysis methodology.

Ratings from Advocacy Organizations

Human Rights Campaign: 100% The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws: A+ Planned Parenthood Action Fund: 100% American Civil Liberties Union: 94% NIAC Action: A League of Conservation Voters: 91% NumbersUSA: 21% United States Chamber of Commerce: 18% Americans for Prosperity: 5% FreedomWorks: 0%

Committee Membership

Bernard “Bernie” Sanders sits on the following committees:

Enacted Legislation

Sanders was the primary sponsor of 7 bills that were enacted:

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We consider a bill enacted if one of the following is true: a) it is enacted itself, b) it has a companion bill in the other chamber (as identified by Congress) which was enacted, or c) if at least about half of its provisions were incorporated into bills that were enacted (as determined by an automated text analysis, applicable beginning with bills in the 110th Congress).

Bills Sponsored

Issue Areas

Sanders sponsors bills primarily in these issue areas:

Armed Forces and National Security (24%) Health (21%) Labor and Employment (18%) Energy (11%) Taxation (11%) Government Operations and Politics (7%) Education (5%) Finance and Financial Sector (4%)

Recent Bills

Some of Sanders’s most recently sponsored bills include...

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Voting Record

Key Votes

Sanders’s Vote Vote Description
Nay H.R. 6157: Department of Defense and Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Act, 2019
Sep 18, 2018. Conference Report Agreed to 93/7.
H.R. 6157 provides $674.6 billion in total discretionary budget authority for the Department of Defense for fiscal year (FY) 2019. The bill provides $606.5 billion for the Department of Defense base budget, which is an increase of $17.1 billion above FY18 levels, and $68.1 billion ...
Nay H.R. 6157: Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2019
Aug 23, 2018. Bill Passed 85/7.
H.R. 6157 provides $674.6 billion in total discretionary budget authority for the Department of Defense for fiscal year (FY) 2019. The bill provides $606.5 billion for the Department of Defense base budget, which is an increase of $17.1 billion above FY18 levels, and $68.1 billion ...
Not Voting H.R. 5325: Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 2017
Sep 28, 2016. Bill Passed 72/26.
Nay H.R. 2029: Military Construction and Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2016
Dec 18, 2015. Motion Agreed to 65/33.
This was the Senate vote on the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 and the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2016, also known as the omnibus spending bill. The bill would fund the federal government for the remainder of fiscal year 2016 (through September 30, ...
Not Voting H.R. 22: Developing a Reliable and Innovative Vision for the Economy Act
Dec 3, 2015. Conference Report Agreed to 83/16.
H.R 22, formerly the Hire More Heroes Act, has become the Senate’s vehicle for passage of the Developing a Reliable and Innovative Vision for the Economy Act or DRIVE Act (S. 1647). The DRIVE Act is a major bipartisan transportation bill that would authorize funding ...
Not Voting H.R. 5771 (113th): Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014
Dec 16, 2014. Bill Passed 76/16.
Nay H.J.Res. 124 (113th): Continuing Appropriations Resolution, 2015
Sep 18, 2014. Joint Resolution Passed 78/22.
Nay H.R. 1540 (112th): National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012
Dec 15, 2011. Conference Report Agreed to 86/13.
Nay H.R. 4853 (111th): Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010
Dec 15, 2010. Motion Agreed to 81/19.
The Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010 (Pub.L. 111–312, H.R. 4853, 124 Stat. 3296, enacted December 17, 2010), also known as the 2010 Tax Relief Act, was passed by the United States Congress on December 16, 2010, and signed into ...
Yea On the Nomination PN177: Gen. George W. Casey, Jr., in the Army, to be General
Feb 8, 2007. Nomination Confirmed 83/14.

Missed Votes

From Jan 2007 to Sep 2018, Sanders missed 231 of 3,535 roll call votes, which is 6.5%. This is much worse than the median of 1.5% among the lifetime records of senators currently serving. The chart below reports missed votes over time.

Show the numbers...

Primary Sources

The information on this page is originally sourced from a variety of materials, including: