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Rep. Christopher Shays

Former Representative for Connecticut’s 4th District

Shays was the representative for Connecticut’s 4th congressional district and was a Republican. He served from 1987 to 2008.

Photo of Rep. Christopher Shays [R-CT4, 1987-2008]


Ideology–Leadership Chart

Shays is shown as a purple triangle in our ideology-leadership chart below. Each dot was a member of the House of Representatives in 2008 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 Shays sponsored and cosponsored from Jan 7, 2003 to Dec 10, 2008. See full analysis methodology.

Enacted Legislation

Shays was the primary sponsor of 3 bills that were enacted:

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Does 3 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

Shays sponsored bills primarily in these issue areas:

Government Operations and Politics (24%) Law (13%) Armed Forces and National Security (12%) Economics and Public Finance (12%) Science, Technology, Communications (12%) Labor and Employment (10%) Crime and Law Enforcement (9%) International Affairs (8%)

Recent Bills

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

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Voting Record

Key Votes

Shays voted Yea

Passed 214/199 on Jan 16, 2008.

Shays voted Aye

Missed Votes

From Sep 1987 to Dec 2008, Shays missed 287 of 12,648 roll call votes, which is 2.3%. This is on par with the median of 3.1% among the lifetime records of representatives serving in Dec 2008. 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.

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Primary Sources

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