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Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s 2016 Report Card

Senior Senator from California
Democrat
Serving Nov 10, 1992 – Jan 3, 2025


These statistics cover Feinstein’s record during the 114th Congress (Jan 6, 2015-Jan 3, 2017) and compare her 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 Feinstein’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 influential cosponsors the 2nd most often compared to Senate Democrats

13 of Feinstein’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. 28: Cluster Munitions Civilian Protection Act ...; S. 29: Respect for Marriage Act; S. 32: Transnational Drug Trafficking Act of ...; S. 596: San Francisco Bay Restoration Act; S. 1006: Positive Train Control Safety Act; S. 1300: Adoptive Family Relief Act; S. 2013: Los Angeles Homeless Veterans Leasing ...; S. 2171: SOAR Reauthorization Act; S. 2337: Visa Waiver Program Security Enhancement ...; S. 3269: Cannabidiol Research Expansion Act; S.Res. 200: A resolution wishing His Holiness ...; S.Res. 459: A resolution recognizing the importance ...; S.Con.Res. 43: A concurrent resolution supporting the ...

Compare to all Senate Democrats (95th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (87th percentile); All Senators (93rd percentile).


 

Ranked the 3rd top leader compared to Senate Democrats

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 Feinstein’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Democrats (93rd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (83rd percentile); All Senators (92nd percentile).


 

Cosponsored the 6th most bills compared to Serving 10+ Years

Feinstein cosponsored 376 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 (70th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (87th percentile); All Senators (86th percentile).


 

Got bicameral support on the 9th most bills compared to All Senators

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 21 of Feinstein’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. 28: Cluster Munitions Civilian Protection Act ...; S. 29: Respect for Marriage Act; S. 32: Transnational Drug Trafficking Act of ...; S. 36: Protecting Our Youth from Dangerous ...; S. 140: Combat Human Trafficking Act of ...; S. 370: Breast Density and Mammography Reporting ...; S. 487: Fire-Damaged Home Rebuilding Act of ...; S. 596: San Francisco Bay Restoration Act; S. 630: Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta National Heritage ...; S. 833: Department of Veterans Affairs Medical ...; S. 1170: Breast Cancer Research Stamp Reauthorization ...; S. 1300: Adoptive Family Relief Act; S. 2372: Requiring Reporting of Online Terrorist ...; S. 2442: A bill to authorize the ...; S. 2533: California Long-Term Provisions for Water ...; S. 3476: National Guard Bonus Repayment and ...; S.Res. 166: A resolution expressing the sense ...; S.Res. 299: A resolution honoring the life, ...; S.Res. 637: A resolution honoring the individuals ...; S.Con.Res. 43: A concurrent resolution supporting the ...; S.Con.Res. 52: A concurrent resolution honoring Vincent ...

Compare to all Senate Democrats (91st percentile); Serving 10+ Years (83rd percentile); All Senators (91st percentile).

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


 

Got bipartisan cosponsors on the 9th most bills compared to All Senators

In this era of partisanship, it is important to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. 26 of Feinstein’s 67 bills and resolutions had both a Democratic cosponsor and a Republican cosponsor in the 114th Congress.

Compare to all Senate Democrats (91st percentile); Serving 10+ Years (87th percentile); All Senators (91st percentile).


 

Got the 9th most cosponsors on their bills compared to All Senators

Feinstein’s bills and resolutions had 552 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 (86th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (81st percentile); All Senators (91st percentile).


 

Ranked 14th most 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 the 114th Congress is considered, the ideology score here may differ from Feinstein’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Democrats (27th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (13th percentile); All Senators (13th percentile).


 

Introduced the 16th most bills compared to All Senators

Feinstein introduced 67 bills and resolutions in the 114th Congress. View Bills »

Compare to all Senate Democrats (77th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (77th percentile); All Senators (84th percentile).


 

Wrote the 13th most laws compared to All Senators (tied with 8 others)

Feinstein introduced 5 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. 32: Transnational Drug Trafficking Act of ...; S. 1170: Breast Cancer Research Stamp Reauthorization ...; S. 1300: Adoptive Family Relief Act; S. 1469: FISA Reform Act of 2015; S. 2013: Los Angeles Homeless Veterans Leasing ...

Compare to all Senate Democrats (89th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (70th percentile); All Senators (79th 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 Out of Committee

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Feinstein introduced 4 bills in the 114th Congress that got past committee and to the floor for consideration.

Those bills were: S. 32: Transnational Drug Trafficking Act of ...; S. 833: Department of Veterans Affairs Medical ...; S. 1170: Breast Cancer Research Stamp Reauthorization ...; S. 1300: Adoptive Family Relief Act

Compare to all Senate Democrats (64th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (38th percentile); All Senators (45th percentile).


 

Committee Positions

Feinstein 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 Feinstein’s Profile »

Compare to all Senate Democrats (59th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (36th percentile); All Senators (66th percentile).


 

Joining Bipartisan Bills

Of the 376 bills that Feinstein cosponsored, 34% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Democrat. View Cosponsored Bills »

Compare to all Senate Democrats (48th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (72nd percentile); All Senators (71st percentile).

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


 

Missed Votes

Feinstein missed 2.6% of votes (13 of 502 votes) in the 114th Congress. View Feinstein’s Profile »

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (60th percentile); All Senators (64th percentile).


 

Government Transparency

GovTrack looked at whether Feinstein supported any of 22 government transparency, accountability, and effectiveness bills in the Senate that we identified in this session. We gave Feinstein 2 points, based on one point for cosponsoring and three points for sponsoring any of these bills.

Feinstein cosponsored S. 229: DISCLOSE Act of 2015; S. 366: Senate Campaign Disclosure Parity Act

Compare to all Senate Democrats (11th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (47th percentile); All Senators (44th 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.