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Sen. Debbie Stabenow’s 2019 Report Card

Senate Democratic Policy & Communications Committee Chair
Senior Senator from Michigan
Democrat
Serving Jan 3, 2001 – Jan 3, 2025


These year-end statistics cover Stabenow’s record during the 2019 legislative year (Jan 3, 2019-Dec 31, 2019) and compare her to other senators serving at the end of that period. Last updated on Jan 18, 2020.

Members of Congress with party leadership roles often do not participate in the legislative process in the same way as other Members of Congress. Since Stabenow was busy being Senate Democratic Policy & Communications Committee Chair, the metrics of legislative activity listed below may not apply.

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 Stabenow’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.

 

Got their bills out of committee the least often compared to Senate Party Leaders

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Stabenow introduced 3 bills in 2019 that got past committee and to the floor for consideration.

Those bills were: S. 1268: PACT Act; S.Res. 75: A resolution honoring the life, ...; S.Res. 132: A resolution honoring the life ...

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (0th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (5th percentile); Senate Democrats (9th percentile); All Senators (10th percentile).


 

Was 2nd most absent in votes compared to Senate Party Leaders

Stabenow missed 2.1% of votes (9 of 428 votes) in 2019. View Stabenow’s Profile »

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (83rd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (64th percentile); All Senators (60th percentile).


 

Got influential cosponsors the 2nd least often compared to Senate Party Leaders (tied with 2 others)

2 of Stabenow’s bills and resolutions in 2019 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. 824: Excellence in Mental Health and ...; S. 1372: PFAS Accountability Act of 2019

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (8th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (14th percentile); Senate Democrats (9th percentile); All Senators (21st percentile).


 

Cosponsored the 3rd most bills compared to Senate Party Leaders

Stabenow cosponsored 299 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 Party Leaders (75th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (62nd percentile); Senate Democrats (29th percentile); All Senators (65th percentile).


 

Got the 3rd fewest cosponsors on their bills compared to Senate Party Leaders

Stabenow’s bills and resolutions had 207 cosponsors in 2019. 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 Party Leaders (17th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (31st percentile); Senate Democrats (29th percentile); All Senators (47th percentile).


 

Ranked the 3rd bottom/follower compared to Senate Party Leaders

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 2019 is considered, the leadership score here may differ from Stabenow’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (17th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (31st percentile); Senate Democrats (36th percentile); All Senators (47th percentile).


 

Introduced the 3rd fewest bills compared to Senate Party Leaders (tied with 1 other)

Stabenow introduced 27 bills and resolutions in 2019. View Bills »

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (17th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (38th percentile); Senate Democrats (22nd percentile); All Senators (37th percentile).


 

Wrote the 3rd fewest laws compared to Senate Party Leaders (tied with 2 others)

Stabenow introduced 1 bill that became law, including via incorporation into other measures, in 2019. 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. 1268: PACT Act

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (17th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (10th percentile); Senate Democrats (20th percentile); All Senators (20th 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.


 

Got bipartisan cosponsors on the 4th fewest bills compared to Senate Party Leaders (tied with 1 other)

In this era of partisanship, it is important to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. 16 of Stabenow’s 27 bills and resolutions had a cosponsor from a different political party than the party Stabenow caucused with in 2019.

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (25th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (48th percentile); Senate Democrats (42nd percentile); All Senators (50th percentile).

Cosponsors who caucused with neither the Democratic nor Republican party do not count toward this statistic.


 

Ranked 21st most left (~liberal) compared to All Senators

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 2019 is considered, the ideology score here may differ from Stabenow’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (25th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (29th percentile); Senate Democrats (42nd percentile); All Senators (20th percentile).


 

Working with the House

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 10 of Stabenow’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. 824: Excellence in Mental Health and ...; S. 880: Improving HOPE for Alzheimer’s; S. 950: PFAS Detection Act of 2019; S. 1013: School-Based Health Centers Reauthorization Act ...; S. 1094: Driving America Forward Act; S. 1268: PACT Act; S. 1372: PFAS Accountability Act of 2019; S. 2001: Willie O’Ree Congressional Gold Medal ...; S. 2295: GLRI Act of 2019; S.Res. 75: A resolution honoring the life, ...

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (42nd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (50th percentile); Senate Democrats (29th percentile); All Senators (52nd percentile).

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


 

Committee Positions

Stabenow 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. View Stabenow’s Profile »

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (50th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (40th percentile); Senate Democrats (60th percentile); All Senators (67th percentile).


 

Joining Bipartisan Bills

Of the 299 bills that Stabenow cosponsored, 23% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Democrat. View Cosponsored Bills »

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (50th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (39th percentile); Senate Democrats (40th percentile); All Senators (35th percentile).

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


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 2019) was the 116th Congress (freshmen) or 115th (sophomores). Members of Congress who took office within the last few months of a Congress are considered freshmen in the next Congress as well.