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Rep. Henry Waxman’s 2014 Report Card

Representative from California's 33rd District
Democrat
Served Jan 3, 2013 – Jan 3, 2015


These special statistics cover Waxman’s record during the 113th Congress (Jan 3, 2013-Jan 2, 2015) and compare him to other representatives also serving at the end of the session. Last updated on Jan 12, 2015. Although Rep. Suzan DelBene [D-WA1], Rep. Thomas Massie [R-KY4], Rep. Donald Payne [D-NJ10], and Sen. Brian Schatz [D-HI] served in the 112th Congress, they took office within the last two months of the 112th Congress and here are grouped with other freshmen for the 113th Congress.

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 Waxman’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.

 

Was 4th most absent in votes compared to House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs

Waxman missed 7.0% of votes (84 of 1,204 votes) in the 113th Congress. View Waxman’s Profile »

Compare to all House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (91st percentile); California Delegation (79th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (82nd percentile); Safe House Seats (87th percentile); All Representatives (87th percentile).

The Speaker of the House is not included in this statistic because according to current House rules, the Speaker of the House is not required to vote in “ordinary legislative proceedings, and the delegates from the five island territories and the District of Columbia are also not included because they were not elligible to vote in any roll call votes.


 

Supported government transparency the 5th most often compared to House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (tied with 4 others)

GovTrack looked at whether Waxman supported any of 12 government transparency, accountability, and effectiveness bills in the House that we identified in this session. We gave Waxman 1 point, based on one point for cosponsoring and three points for sponsoring any of these bills.

Waxman cosponsored H.R. 2475: Ending Secret Law Act

Compare to all House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (80th percentile); California Delegation (68th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (80th percentile); House Democrats (74th percentile); Safe House Seats (80th percentile); All Representatives (80th percentile).


 

Cosponsored the 9th most bills compared to House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs

Waxman cosponsored 295 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 House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (80th percentile); California Delegation (49th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (66th percentile); House Democrats (47th percentile); Safe House Seats (67th percentile); All Representatives (66th percentile).


 

Introduced the 11th fewest bills compared to House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (tied with 1 other)

Waxman introduced 9 bills and resolutions in the 113th Congress. View Bills »

Compare to all House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (22nd percentile); California Delegation (23rd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (24th percentile); House Democrats (25th percentile); Safe House Seats (28th percentile); All Representatives (27th percentile).


 

Joined bipartisan bills the 45th least often compared to House Democrats

Of the 295 bills that Waxman cosponsored, 25% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Democrat. View Cosponsored Bills »

Compare to all House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (62nd percentile); California Delegation (47th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (56th percentile); House Democrats (21st percentile); Safe House Seats (62nd percentile); All Representatives (59th percentile).

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


 

Got influential cosponsors the 71st most often compared to All Representatives (tied with 21 others)

5 of Waxman’s bills and resolutions in the 113th 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: H.R. 1588: Medicare Drug Savings Act of ...; H.R. 2910: Gun Violence Prevention and Reduction ...; H.R. 3982: Open Internet Preservation Act of ...; H.R. 4004: To authorize the Secretary of ...; H.R. 4364: Motor Vehicle Safety Act of ...

Compare to all House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (53rd percentile); California Delegation (75th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (69th percentile); House Democrats (77th percentile); Safe House Seats (79th percentile); All Representatives (79th percentile).


 

Laws Enacted

Waxman introduced 0 bills that became law in the 113th Congress. Keep in mind that it takes a law to repeal a law. Very few bills ever become law.

Compare to all House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (0th percentile); California Delegation (0th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (0th percentile); House Democrats (0th percentile); Safe House Seats (0th percentile); All Representatives (0th percentile).

A bill or joint resolution is considered enacted if it or an exactly identical bill to it is enacted as law. We only consider bills that the legislator was the primary sponsor of. While a legislator may lay claim to authoring other bills that became law, such as through incorporation into larger bills, these cases are difficult for us to track quantitatively.


 

Working with the Senate

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 3 of Waxman’s bills and resolutions had a companion bill in the Senate. 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: H.R. 1588: Medicare Drug Savings Act of ...; H.R. 3982: Open Internet Preservation Act of ...; H.R. 4004: To authorize the Secretary of ...

Compare to all House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (69th percentile); California Delegation (64th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (62nd percentile); House Democrats (62nd percentile); Safe House Seats (68th percentile); All Representatives (67th percentile).

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


 

Bills Out of Committee

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Waxman introduced 0 bills in the 113th Congress that got past committee and to the floor for consideration.

Compare to all House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (0th percentile); California Delegation (0th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (0th percentile); House Democrats (0th percentile); Safe House Seats (0th percentile); All Representatives (0th percentile).


 

Cosponsors

Waxman’s bills and resolutions had 114 cosponsors in the 113th 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 House Cmte. Chairs/RkMembs (27th percentile); California Delegation (26th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (29th percentile); House Democrats (31st percentile); Safe House Seats (30th percentile); All Representatives (30th percentile).


 

Committee Positions

Waxman held a leadership position on 1 committee and 0 subcommittees, as either a chair (majority party) or ranking member (minority party), at the end of the session. View Waxman’s Profile »

Compare to all California Delegation (87th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (76th percentile); House Democrats (90th percentile); Safe House Seats (89th percentile); All Representatives (90th 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 113th Congress) was the 113th Congress (freshmen) or 112th (sophomores). Members of Congress who took office within the last few months of a Congress are considered freshmen in the next Congress as well.