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Sen. Byron Dorgan

Former Senator for North Dakota

Dorgan was a senator from North Dakota and was a Democrat. He served from 1992 to 2010.

He was previously the representative for North Dakota’s at-large district as a Democrat from 1981 to 1992.

Photo of Sen. Byron Dorgan [D-ND, 1992-2010]


Ideology–Leadership Chart

Dorgan is shown as a purple triangle in our ideology-leadership chart below. Each dot was a member of the Senate in 2010 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 Dorgan sponsored and cosponsored from Jan 24, 2005 to Dec 22, 2010. See full analysis methodology.

Enacted Legislation

Dorgan was the primary sponsor of 17 bills that were enacted. The most recent include:

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Does 17 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

Dorgan sponsored bills primarily in these issue areas:

Government Operations and Politics (18%) Law (15%) Economics and Public Finance (13%) Commerce (13%) Health (12%) Native Americans (10%) Finance and Financial Sector (10%) Energy (9%)

Recently Introduced Bills

Dorgan recently introduced the following legislation:

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Most legislation has no activity after being introduced.

Voting Record

Key Votes

Dorgan voted Nay

Motion Agreed to 81/19 on Dec 15, 2010.

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 …

Dorgan voted Yea

Dorgan voted Nay

Bill Passed 69/28 on Jul 9, 2008.

The FISA Amendments Act of 2008, also called the FAA and Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 Amendments Act of 2008, is an Act of …

Dorgan voted Nay

Bill Passed 68/29 on Feb 12, 2008.

Dorgan voted Nay

Dorgan voted Yea

Missed Votes

From Feb 1993 to Dec 2010, Dorgan missed 108 of 6,233 roll call votes, which is 1.7%. This is on par with the median of 2.0% among the lifetime records of senators serving in Dec 2010. The chart below reports missed votes over time.

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

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Primary Sources

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