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Sen. Chris Coons’s 2016 Report Card

Junior Senator from Delaware
Democrat
Serving Nov 15, 2010 – Jan 3, 2021


These statistics cover Coons’s record during the 114th Congress (Jan 6, 2015-Jan 3, 2017) and compare him to other senators also serving at the end of the session. Last updated on Aug 24, 2017. The statistics were updated on Jan 20, 2017 and Aug 24, 2017 to improve how we counted enacted laws. Originally published on Jan 7, 2017.

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 Coons’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.

 

Cosponsored the 6th most bills compared to All Senators

Coons cosponsored 427 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 Senate Democrats (89th percentile); All Senators (94th percentile).


 

Got the 11th fewest cosponsors on their bills compared to Senate Democrats

Coons’s bills and resolutions had 183 cosponsors in the 114th Congress. 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 Senate Democrats (23rd percentile); All Senators (33rd percentile).


 

Got bipartisan cosponsors on the 10th most bills compared to All Senators (tied with 3 others)

In this era of partisanship, it is important to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. 25 of Coons’s 43 bills and resolutions had both a Democratic cosponsor and a Republican cosponsor in the 114th Congress.

Compare to all Senate Democrats (84th percentile); All Senators (87th percentile).


 

Joined bipartisan bills the 13th most often compared to All Senators

In this era of partisanship, it is encouraging to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. Of the 427 bills that Coons cosponsored, 41% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Democrat. View Cosponsored Bills »

Compare to all Senate Democrats (73rd percentile); All Senators (87th percentile).

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


 

Was 21st most absent in votes compared to All Senators

Coons missed 3.6% of votes (18 of 502 votes) in the 114th Congress. View Coons’s Profile »

Compare to all All Senators (79th percentile).


 

Got their bills out of committee the 21st least often compared to All Senators (tied with 10 others)

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Coons introduced 2 bills in the 114th Congress that got past committee and to the floor for consideration.

Those bills were: S.Res. 330: A resolution congratulating the Tunisian ...; S.Res. 381: A resolution honoring the memory ...

Compare to all Senate Democrats (27th percentile); All Senators (20th percentile).


 

Laws Enacted

Coons introduced 1 bill that became law, including via incorporation into other measures, in the 114th Congress. Keep in mind that it takes a law to repeal a law. Very few bills ever become law. View Enacted Bills »

Those bills were: S. 2113: Crowdsourcing and Citizen Science Act ...

Compare to all Senate Democrats (11th percentile); All Senators (15th 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 Introduced

Coons introduced 43 bills and resolutions in the 114th Congress. View Bills »

Compare to all Senate Democrats (50th percentile); All Senators (55th percentile).


 

Powerful Cosponsors

6 of Coons’s bills and resolutions in the 114th Congress 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: S. 379: Small Business Tax Credit Accessibility ...; S. 632: STRONG Patents Act of 2015; S. 2496: Help Small Businesses Access Affordable ...; S. 3475: Review the Rule Act of ...; S.Res. 330: A resolution congratulating the Tunisian ...; S.Res. 552: A resolution commemorating the fifteenth ...

Compare to all Senate Democrats (61st percentile); All Senators (63rd percentile).


 

Working with the House

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 9 of Coons’s bills and resolutions had a companion bill in the House. 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: S. 379: Small Business Tax Credit Accessibility ...; S. 687: American Dream Accounts Act; S. 722: A bill to extend the ...; S. 771: Manufacturing Universities Act of 2015; S. 1656: Master Limited Partnerships Parity Act; S. 2297: Medicare Choices Empowerment and Protection ...; S. 2800: Stop Taxing Death and Disability ...; S. 3475: Review the Rule Act of ...; S.Res. 80: A resolution recognizing the cultural ...

Compare to all Senate Democrats (30th percentile); All Senators (38th percentile).

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


 

Committee Positions

Coons held a leadership position on 0 committees and 2 subcommittees, as either a chair (majority party) or ranking member (minority party), at the end of the session. View Coons’s Profile »

Compare to all Senate Democrats (18th percentile); All Senators (21st 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 the 114th Congress is considered, the ideology score here may differ from Coons’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Democrats (68th percentile); All Senators (31st 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 the 114th Congress is considered, the leadership score here may differ from Coons’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Democrats (41st percentile); All Senators (35th percentile).


 

Government Transparency

GovTrack looked at whether Coons supported any of 22 government transparency, accountability, and effectiveness bills in the Senate that we identified in this session. We gave Coons 4 points, based on one point for cosponsoring and three points for sponsoring any of these bills.

Coons cosponsored S. 229: DISCLOSE Act of 2015; S. 337: FOIA Improvement Act of 2016; S. 366: Senate Campaign Disclosure Parity Act; S. 1538: Fair Elections Now Act

Compare to all Senate Democrats (55th percentile); All Senators (72nd 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 the 114th Congress) was the 114th Congress (freshmen) or 113th (sophomores). Members of Congress who took office within the last few months of a Congress are considered freshmen in the next Congress as well.