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Rep. Bobby Rush

Representative for Illinois’s 1st District

pronounced BAH-bee // rush

Rush is the representative for Illinois’s 1st congressional district (view map) and is a Democrat. He has served since Jan 5, 1993. Rush’s current term ends on Jan 3, 2023.


In 2014 Rush was investigated for allowing state and federal campaign committees to accept in-kind contributions. With publication of its report, the House Committee on Ethics reproved Rush for accepting a gift of rent-free office space even if it did not amount to a campaign contribution and ordered him to repay the value of the gift.

Jun. 10, 2014 House Office of Congressional Ethics referred the case to the House Committee on Ethics
Nov. 10, 2014 House Committee on Ethics published the Office of Congressional Ethics Report and Findings and the member's response
Mar. 22, 2018 House Committee on Ethics with publication of its report, the committee reproved Rush for accepting a gift of rent-free office space even if it did not amount to a campaign contribution and ordered him to repay the value of the gift
Photo of Rep. Bobby Rush [D-IL1]


Ideology–Leadership Chart

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

The chart is based on the bills Rush has sponsored and cosponsored from Jan 3, 2017 to Dec 7, 2022. See full analysis methodology.

Committee Membership

Bobby Rush sits on the following committees:

Enacted Legislation

Rush was the primary sponsor of 9 bills that were enacted. The most recent include:

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Does 9 not sound like a lot? Very few bills are ever enacted — most legislators sponsor only a handful that are signed into law. But there are other legislative activities that we don’t track that are also important, including offering amendments, committee work and oversight of the other branches, and constituent services.

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

Rush sponsors bills primarily in these issue areas:

Health (33%) Commerce (12%) Crime and Law Enforcement (12%) Environmental Protection (11%) Energy (10%) Public Lands and Natural Resources (9%) Transportation and Public Works (7%) Agriculture and Food (6%)

Recently Introduced Bills

Rush recently introduced the following legislation:

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Most legislation has no activity after being introduced.

Voting Record

Key Votes

Rush voted Yea

Rush voted Nay

Rush voted No

Passed 360/61 on Dec 8, 2016.

The WIIN (Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation) Act was a 277-page bill dealing with federal water policies, particularly for drought-stricken areas. It’s so complex …

Rush voted Nay

Passed 338/88 on May 13, 2015.

The USA Freedom Act (H.R. 2048, Pub.L. 114–23) is a U.S. law enacted on June 2, 2015 that restored in modified form several provisions of …

Rush voted Aye

Rush voted No

Rush voted No

Passed 304/117 on Jun 23, 2011.

The Leahy–Smith America Invents Act (AIA) is a United States federal statute that was passed by Congress and was signed into law by President Barack …

Missed Votes

From Jan 1993 to Dec 2022, Rush missed 2,915 of 19,072 roll call votes, which is 15.3%. This is much worse than the median of 2.1% among the lifetime records of representatives currently serving. The chart below reports missed votes over time.

We don’t track why legislators miss votes, but it’s often due to medical absenses and major life events.

Show the numbers...

Primary Sources

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