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Rep. Bill Foster’s 2017 Report Card

Representative from Illinois's 11th District
Democrat
Serving Jan 3, 2013 – Jan 3, 2021


These year-end statistics cover Foster’s record during the 2017 legislative year (Jan 3, 2017-Dec 31, 2017) and compare him to other representatives serving at the end of that period. Last updated on Jan 6, 2018.

A higher or lower number below doesn’t necessarily make this legislator any better or worse, or more or less effective, than other Members of Congress. We present these statistics for you to understand the quantitative aspects of Foster’s legislative career and make your own judgements based on what activities you think are important.

Keep in mind that there are many important aspects of being a legislator besides what can be measured, such as constituent services and performing oversight of the executive branch, which aren’t reflected here.

 

Got bipartisan cosponsors on the 28th most bills compared to House Democrats (tied with 9 others)

In this era of partisanship, it is important to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. 7 of Foster’s 18 bills and resolutions had both a Democratic cosponsor and a Republican cosponsor in 2017.

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (50th percentile); House Democrats (81st percentile); All Representatives (76th percentile).


 

Joined bipartisan bills the 55th most often compared to All Representatives

In this era of partisanship, it is encouraging to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. Of the 235 bills that Foster cosponsored, 36% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Democrat. View Cosponsored Bills »

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (72nd percentile); House Democrats (73rd percentile); All Representatives (87th percentile).

Only Democratic and Republican Members of Congress who cosponsored more than 10 bills and resolutions are included in this statistic.


 

Introduced the 84th most bills compared to All Representatives (tied with 19 others)

Foster introduced 18 bills and resolutions in 2017. View Bills »

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (83rd percentile); House Democrats (74th percentile); All Representatives (76th percentile).


 

Laws Enacted

Foster introduced 0 bills that became law, including via incorporation into other measures, in 2017. Keep in mind that it takes a law to repeal a law. Very few bills ever become law.

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (0th percentile); House Democrats (0th percentile); All Representatives (0th percentile).

The legislator must be the primary sponsor of the bill or joint resolution that was enacted or the primary sponsor of a bill or joint resolution for which at least about one third of its text was incorporated into another bill or joint resolution that was enacted as law, as determined by an automated analysis. While a legislator may lay claim to authoring other bills that became law, these cases are difficult for us to track quantitatively. We also exclude bills where the sponsor’s original intent is not in the final bill.


 

Bills Out of Committee

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Foster introduced 0 bills in 2017 that got past committee and to the floor for consideration.

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (0th percentile); House Democrats (0th percentile); All Representatives (0th percentile).


 

Powerful Cosponsors

2 of Foster’s bills and resolutions in 2017 had a cosponsor who was a chair or ranking member of a committee that the bill was referred to. Getting support from committee leaders on relevant committees is a crucial step in moving legislation forward.

Those bills were: H.Res. 196: Expressing support for designation of ...; H.R. 2750: Protecting the Independent Funding of ...

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (28th percentile); House Democrats (41st percentile); All Representatives (44th percentile).


 

Working with the Senate

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 2 of Foster’s bills and resolutions had a companion bill in the Senate. Working with a sponsor in the other chamber makes a bill more likely to be passed by both the House and Senate.

Those bills were: H.R. 1569: American Innovation Act; H.R. 2687: Medicaid Coverage for Addiction Recovery ...

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (50th percentile); House Democrats (56th percentile); All Representatives (54th percentile).

Companion bills are those that are identified as “identical” by Congress’s Congressional Research Service.


 

Committee Positions

Foster held a leadership position on 0 committees and 0 subcommittees, as either a chair (majority party) or ranking member (minority party), at the end of the session. View Foster’s Profile »

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (0th percentile); House Democrats (0th percentile); All Representatives (0th percentile).


 

Bills Cosponsored

Foster cosponsored 235 bills and resolutions introduced by other Members of Congress. Cosponsorship shows a willingness to work with others to advance policy goals. View Cosponsored Bills »

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (50th percentile); House Democrats (38th percentile); All Representatives (68th percentile).


 

Cosponsors

Foster’s bills and resolutions had 199 cosponsors in 2017. Securing cosponsors is an important part of getting support for a bill, although having more cosponsors does not always mean a bill will get a vote. View Bills »

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (44th percentile); House Democrats (59th percentile); All Representatives (64th percentile).


 

Ideology Score

Our unique ideology analysis assigns a score to Members of Congress according to their legislative behavior by how similar the pattern of bills and resolutions they cosponsor are to other Members of Congress.

For more, see our methodology. Note that because on this page only legislative activity in 2017 is considered, the ideology score here may differ from Foster’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (33rd percentile); House Democrats (64th percentile); All Representatives (29th percentile).


 

Leadership Score

Our unique leadership analysis looks at who is cosponsoring whose bills. A higher score shows a greater ability to get cosponsors on bills.

For more, see our methodology. Note that because on this page only legislative activity in 2017 is considered, the leadership score here may differ from Foster’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (28th percentile); House Democrats (50th percentile); All Representatives (44th percentile).


 

Missed Votes

Foster missed 1.1% of votes (8 of 710 votes) in 2017. View Foster’s Profile »

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (44th percentile); All Representatives (34th percentile).

The Speaker of the House is not included in this statistic because according to current House rules, the Speaker of the House is not required to vote in “ordinary legislative proceedings, and the delegates from the five island territories and the District of Columbia are also not included because they were not elligible to vote in any roll call votes.


 

Government Transparency

GovTrack looked at whether Foster supported any of 21 government transparency, accountability, and effectiveness bills in the House that we identified in this session. We gave Foster 1 point, based on one point for cosponsoring and three points for sponsoring any of these bills.

Foster cosponsored H.Res. 630: Requiring each Member, officer, and ...

Compare to all Illinois Delegation (28th percentile); House Democrats (18th percentile); All Representatives (28th percentile).


Additional Notes

The Speaker’s Votes: Missed votes are not computed for the Speaker of the House. According to current House rules, the Speaker of the House is not required to vote in “ordinary legislative proceedings.” In practice this means the Speaker of the House rarely votes but is not considered absent.

Leadership/Ideology: The leadership and ideology scores are not displayed for Members of Congress who introduced fewer than 10 bills, or, for ideology, for Members of Congress that have a low leadership score, as there is usually not enough data in these cases to compute reliable leadership and ideology statistics.

Missing Bills: We exclude bills from some statistics where the sponsor’s original intent is not in the final bill because the bill’s text was replaced in whole with unrelated provisions (i.e. it became a vehicle for passage of unrelated provisions).

Ranking Members (RkMembs): The chair of a committee is always selected from the political party that holds the most seats in the chamber, called the “majority party”. The “ranking member” (sometimes “RkMembs”) is the title given to the senior-most member of the committee not in the majority party.

Freshmen/Sophomores: Freshmen and sophomores are Members of Congress whose first term (in the same chamber at the end of 2017) was the 115th Congress (freshmen) or 114th (sophomores). Members of Congress who took office within the last few months of a Congress are considered freshmen in the next Congress as well.

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