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Sen. David Vitter’s 2016 Report Card

Senior Senator from Louisiana
Republican
Served Jan 4, 2005 – Jan 3, 2017


These special statistics cover Vitter’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 Vitter’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.

 

Bills Introduced

the most bills among All Senators

Vitter introduced 140 bills and resolutions in the 114th Congress. View Bills »

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Serving 10+ Years the most bills out of 47 8
140 bills View All
Senate Republicans the most bills out of 54 8
140 bills View All
All Senators the most bills out of 100 8
140 bills View All
 

Working with the House

3rd most bills among All Senators; tied with 2 others

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 26 of Vitter’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. 42: Stopping Illegal Obamacare Subsidies Act; S. 51: Title X Abortion Provider Prohibition ...; S. 54: Regulatory Fairness Act of 2015; S. 61: Kisatchie National Forest Land Conveyance ...; S. 66: A bill to prohibit any ...; S. 67: Restoring Main Street Investor Protection ...; S. 73: Local Control of Education Act; S. 99: Notch Fairness Act of 2015; S. 106: Ending Legacy Lawsuit Abuse Act; S. 118: Stopping Illegal Obamacare Subsidies Act; S. 234: Regulatory Fairness Act of 2015; S. 768: Steve Gleason Act of 2015; S. 798: Policyholder Protection Act of 2015; S. 984: Steve Gleason Act of 2015; S. 1020: Diagnostic Imaging Services Access Protection ...; S. 1151: USPSTF Transparency and Accountability Act ...; S. 1308: A bill to amend chapter ...; S. 1351: Firearms Interstate Commerce Reform Act; S. 1388: Cuba Normalization Accountability Act of ...; S. 1795: National Disaster Tax Relief Act ...; S. 2005: Social Security Disability Insurance and ...; S. 2284: Syrian Refugee Verification and Safety ...; S. 3487: Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for ...; S.Res. 225: A resolution honoring the National ...; S.J.Res. 1: A joint resolution proposing an ...; S.J.Res. 21: A joint resolution proposing an ...

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Serving 10+ Years 2nd most bills (tied w/ 2) out of 47 1
40 bills View All
Senate Republicans 3rd most bills (tied w/ 1) out of 54 1
40 bills View All
All Senators 3rd most bills (tied w/ 2) out of 100 1
40 bills View All

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

 

Missed Votes

5th most absent among All Senators

Vitter missed 15.1% of votes (76 of 502 votes) in the 114th Congress. View Vitter’s Profile »

compared to... rank most voting ⇢ most absent
Serving 10+ Years 3rd most absent out of 47 0
28% missed votes View All
All Senators 5th most absent out of 100 0
32% missed votes View All
 

Ideology Score

5th most conservative among Serving 10+ Years

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 Vitter’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

compared to... rank most liberal ⇢ most conservative
Serving 10+ Years 5th most conservative out of 47
View All
Senate Republicans 14th most conservative out of 54
View All
All Senators 14th most conservative out of 100
View All
 

Cosponsors

6th most cosponsors among Senate Republicans

Vitter’s bills and resolutions had 458 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 »

compared to... rank fewest cosponsors ⇢ most cosponsors
Serving 10+ Years 12th most cosponsors out of 47 11
989 cosponsors View All
Senate Republicans 6th most cosponsors out of 54 11
989 cosponsors View All
All Senators 14th most cosponsors out of 100 11
989 cosponsors View All
 

Leadership Score

9th best score among All Senators

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 Vitter’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

compared to... rank worst score ⇢ best score
Serving 10+ Years 9th best score out of 47
View All
Senate Republicans 6th best score out of 54
View All
All Senators 9th best score out of 100
View All
 

Government Transparency

8th most supportive among Senate Republicans; tied with 3 others

GovTrack looked at whether Vitter supported any of 22 government transparency bills in the Senate that we identified in this session. We gave Vitter 3 points, based on one point for cosponsoring and three points for sponsoring any of these bills.

Sponsored: S. 18: A bill to prohibit authorized ...

compared to... rank least supportive ⇢ most supportive
Serving 10+ Years 11th most supportive (tied w/ 5) out of 47 0
11 points View All
Senate Republicans 8th most supportive (tied w/ 3) out of 54 0
10 points View All
All Senators 29th most supportive (tied w/ 15) out of 100 0
11 points View All
 

Bills Out of Committee

11th most bills among All Senators; tied with 1 other

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Vitter introduced 14 bills in the 114th Congress that got a committee vote sending it to the floor for further consideration.

Those bills were: S. 984: Steve Gleason Act of 2015; S. 999: Small Business Development Centers Improvement ...; S. 1292: HUBZone Revitalization Act of 2015; S. 1470: RISE After Disaster Act of ...; S. 1866: Veterans Small Business Ownership Improvements ...; S. 2136: Improving Small Business Innovative Research ...; S. 2138: Small Business Subcontracting Transparency Act ...; S. 2139: Small Contractors Improve Competition Act ...; S. 2146: Stop Sanctuary Policies and Protect ...; S. 2831: A bill to amend the ...; S. 2838: Small Business Transforming America’s Regions ...; S. 2992: Small Business Lending Oversight Act ...; S. 3024: Small Business Cyber Security Improvements ...; S.Res. 252: An original resolution expressing the ...

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Serving 10+ Years 10th most bills (tied w/ 1) out of 47 0
36 bills View All
Senate Republicans 8th most bills (tied w/ 1) out of 54 0
36 bills View All
All Senators 11th most bills (tied w/ 1) out of 100 0
36 bills View All
 

Bills Cosponsored

13th most bills among Senate Republicans

Vitter cosponsored 258 bills and resolutions introduced by other Members of Congress. Cosponsorship shows a willingness to work with others to advance policy goals. View Cosponsored Bills »

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Serving 10+ Years 22nd most bills out of 47 74
426 bills View All
Senate Republicans 13th most bills out of 54 74
432 bills View All
All Senators 47th most bills out of 100 74
479 bills View All
 

Writing Bipartisan Bills

16th most bills among All Senators; tied with 1 other

In this era of partisanship, it is encouraging to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. 21 of Vitter’s 140 bills and resolutions had both a Democratic cosponsor and a Republican cosponsor in the 114th Congress.

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Serving 10+ Years 11th most bills (tied w/ 1) out of 47 0
49 bills View All
Senate Republicans 8th most bills (tied w/ 1) out of 54 1
49 bills View All
All Senators 16th most bills (tied w/ 1) out of 100 0
49 bills View All
 

Joining Bipartisan Bills

22nd least bipartisan among All Senators

Of the 258 bills that Vitter cosponsored, 19% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Republican. View Cosponsored Bills »

compared to... rank least bipartisan ⇢ most bipartisan
Serving 10+ Years 11th least bipartisan out of 46 11
54% of bills View All
Senate Republicans 22nd least bipartisan out of 54 11
54% of bills View All
All Senators 22nd least bipartisan out of 98 11
66% of bills View All

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

 

Powerful Cosponsors

24th most bills among All Senators; tied with 6 others

7 of Vitter’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. 48: Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act of 2015; S. 1866: Veterans Small Business Ownership Improvements ...; S. 2139: Small Contractors Improve Competition Act ...; S. 2838: Small Business Transforming America’s Regions ...; S. 2992: Small Business Lending Oversight Act ...; S.Res. 243: A resolution celebrating the 35th ...; S.J.Res. 21: A joint resolution proposing an ...

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Serving 10+ Years 16th most bills (tied w/ 2) out of 47 0
19 bills View All
Senate Republicans 16th most bills (tied w/ 1) out of 54 0
19 bills View All
All Senators 24th most bills (tied w/ 6) out of 100 0
19 bills View All
 

Laws Enacted

34th most bills among All Senators; tied with 8 others

Vitter introduced 3 bills 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. 984: Steve Gleason Act of 2015; S. 1470: RISE After Disaster Act of ...; S. 2036: Equity in Government Compensation Act ...

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Serving 10+ Years 21st most bills (tied w/ 5) out of 47 0
15 View All
Senate Republicans 23rd most bills (tied w/ 4) out of 54 0
15 View All
All Senators 34th most bills (tied w/ 8) out of 100 0
15 View All

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.

 

Committee Positions

Vitter held a leadership position on 1 committee and 1 subcommittee, as either a chair (majority party) or ranking member (minority party), at the end of the session. For comparison to other Members of Congress, we assigned a score giving five points for each full committee leadership position and one point for each subcommittee leadership position. View Vitter’s Profile »

compared to... rank lowest score ⇢ highest score
Serving 10+ Years 8th highest score (tied w/ 22) out of 47 0
12 points View All
Senate Republicans 7th highest score (tied w/ 8) out of 54 0
16 points View All
All Senators 10th highest score (tied w/ 24) out of 100 0
16 points View All

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.

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.