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Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s 2017 Report Card

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


These year-end statistics cover Feinstein’s record during the 2017 legislative year (Jan 3, 2017-Dec 31, 2017) and compare her to other senators serving at the end of that period. Last updated on Jan 6, 2018.

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.

 

Cosponsored the 3rd most bills compared to Serving 10+ Years

Feinstein cosponsored 286 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 Serving 10+ Years (93rd percentile); Senate Democrats (76th percentile); All Senators (89th percentile).


 

Was 5th most absent in votes compared to All Senators

Feinstein missed 7.7% of votes (25 of 325 votes) in 2017. View Feinstein’s Profile »

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (88th percentile); All Senators (95th percentile).


 

Ranked the 5th 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 2017 is considered, the leadership score here may differ from Feinstein’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (78th percentile); Senate Democrats (89th percentile); All Senators (88th percentile).


 

Got the 6th most cosponsors on their bills compared to All Senators

Feinstein’s bills and resolutions had 383 cosponsors in 2017. 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 Serving 10+ Years (85th percentile); Senate Democrats (93rd percentile); All Senators (94th percentile).


 

Ranked 6th most politically left compared to 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 2017 is considered, the ideology score here may differ from Feinstein’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (12th percentile); Senate Democrats (28th percentile); All Senators (14th percentile).


 

Joined bipartisan bills the 12th least often compared to Senate Democrats

Of the 286 bills that Feinstein cosponsored, 25% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Democrat. View Cosponsored Bills »

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (38th percentile); Senate Democrats (24th percentile); All Senators (42nd percentile).

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


 

Introduced the 16th most bills compared to All Senators

Feinstein introduced 43 bills and resolutions in 2017. View Bills »

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (73rd percentile); Senate Democrats (83rd percentile); All Senators (84th percentile).


 

Got bicameral support on the 14th most bills compared to All Senators (tied with 5 others)

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 13 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. 30: Extending Justice for Sex Crime ...; S. 31: West Coast Ocean Protection Act ...; S. 357: Santa Ana River Wash Plan ...; S. 611: Homeless Children and Youth Act ...; S. 731: Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta National Heritage ...; S. 897: Cluster Munitions Civilian Protection Act ...; S. 1034: Agricultural Worker Program Act of ...; S. 1916: Automatic Gunfire Prevention Act; S. 1993: Rim of the Valley Corridor ...; S. 2006: Breast Density and Mammography Reporting ...; S.Res. 192: A resolution congratulating the Golden ...; S.Res. 208: A resolution expressing the sense ...; S.Res. 248: A resolution expressing the sense ...

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (76th percentile); Senate Democrats (74th percentile); All Senators (81st percentile).

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


 

Got their bills out of committee the 15th most often compared to All Senators (tied with 8 others)

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Feinstein introduced 9 bills in 2017 that got past committee and to the floor for consideration.

Those bills were: S. 274: A bill to nullify the ...; S. 534: Protecting Young Victims from Sexual ...; S. 1768: National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program ...; S.Res. 147: A resolution commemorating the 25th ...; S.Res. 192: A resolution congratulating the Golden ...; S.Res. 209: A resolution commemorating the 40th ...; S.Res. 248: A resolution expressing the sense ...; S.Res. 249: A resolution designating September 2017 ...; S.Res. 267: A resolution designating September 2017 ...

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (61st percentile); Senate Democrats (85th percentile); All Senators (77th percentile).


 

Laws Enacted

Feinstein introduced 0 bills that became law, including via incorporation into other measures, in 2017. Keep in mind that it takes a law to repeal a law. Very few bills ever become law.

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


 

Powerful Cosponsors

5 of Feinstein’s bills and resolutions in 2017 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. 31: West Coast Ocean Protection Act ...; S. 232: A bill to terminate the ...; S. 534: Protecting Young Victims from Sexual ...; S. 897: Cluster Munitions Civilian Protection Act ...; S. 1276: Cannabidiol Research Expansion Act

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (54th percentile); Senate Democrats (67th percentile); All Senators (67th percentile).


 

Writing Bipartisan Bills

In this era of partisanship, it is important to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. 12 of Feinstein’s 43 bills and resolutions had both a Democratic cosponsor and a Republican cosponsor in 2017.

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (61st percentile); Senate Democrats (63rd percentile); All Senators (70th 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 Serving 10+ Years (39th percentile); Senate Democrats (61st percentile); All Senators (67th percentile).


 

Government Transparency

GovTrack looked at whether Feinstein supported any of 8 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.Res. 323: STOP Sexual Harassment Resolution; S. 2236: Congressional Harassment Reform Act

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (78th percentile); Senate Democrats (61st percentile); All Senators (74th 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 2017) was the 115th Congress (freshmen) or 114th (sophomores). Members of Congress who took office within the last few months of a Congress are considered freshmen in the next Congress as well.