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Sen. James Abdnor

Former Senator for South Dakota

Abdnor was a senator from South Dakota and was a Republican. He served from 1981 to 1986.

He was previously the representative for South Dakota’s 2nd congressional district as a Republican from 1973 to 1980.

Photo of Sen. James Abdnor [R-SD, 1981-1986]


Ideology–Leadership Chart

Abdnor is shown as a purple triangle in our ideology-leadership chart below. Each dot was a member of the Senate in 1986 positioned according to our ideology score (left to right) and our leadership score (leaders are toward the top).

The chart is based on the bills Abdnor sponsored and cosponsored from Jan 5, 1981 to Oct 18, 1986. See full analysis methodology.

Enacted Legislation

Abdnor was the primary sponsor of 11 bills that were enacted. The most recent include:

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Does 11 not sound like a lot? Very few bills are ever enacted — most legislators sponsor only a handful that are signed into law. But there are other legislative activities that we don’t track that are also important, including offering amendments, committee work and oversight of the other branches, and constituent services.

We consider a bill enacted if one of the following is true: a) it is enacted itself, b) it has a companion bill in the other chamber (as identified by Congress) which was enacted, or c) if at least about half of its provisions were incorporated into bills that were enacted (as determined by an automated text analysis, applicable beginning with bills in the 110th Congress).

Bills Sponsored

Issue Areas

Abdnor sponsored bills primarily in these issue areas:

Water Resources Development (23%) Taxation (17%) Agriculture and Food (16%) Economics and Public Finance (14%) Government Operations and Politics (11%) Energy (7%) Environmental Protection (6%) Private Legislation (6%)

Recently Introduced Bills

Abdnor recently introduced the following legislation:

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Most legislation has no activity after being introduced.

Voting Record

Missed Votes

From Jan 1981 to Oct 1986, Abdnor missed 43 of 2,368 roll call votes, which is 1.8%. This is better than the median of 6.0% among the lifetime records of senators serving in Oct 1986. The chart below reports missed votes over time.

We don’t track why legislators miss votes, but it’s often due to medical absenses, major life events, and running for higher office.

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Primary Sources

The information on this page is originally sourced from a variety of materials, including: