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Rep. James “Jim” Clyburn’s 2016 Report Card

Representative from South Carolina's 6th District
Democrat
Serving Jan 5, 1993 – Jan 3, 2019


These special statistics cover Clyburn’s record during the 114th Congress (Jan 6, 2015-Jan 3, 2017) and compare him to other representatives 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 Clyburn’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.

 

Bills Cosponsored

the fewest bills among South Carolina Delegation

Clyburn cosponsored 111 bills and resolutions introduced by other Members of Congress. Cosponsorship shows a willingness to work with others to advance policy goals. View Cosponsored Bills »

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
South Carolina Delegation the fewest bills out of 7 111
349 bills View All
Serving 10+ Years 10th fewest bills out of 185 14
1,007 bills View All
House Democrats 5th fewest bills out of 191 2
1,007 bills View All
All Representatives 20th fewest bills out of 439 1
1,007 bills View All
 

Laws Enacted

the most bills among South Carolina Delegation

Clyburn introduced 2 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: H.R. 2131: To designate the Federal building ...; H.R. 3004: To amend the Gullah/Geechee Cultural ...

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
South Carolina Delegation the most bills out of 7 0
2 View All
Serving 10+ Years 21st most bills (tied w/ 17) out of 185 0
8 View All
House Democrats 5th most bills (tied w/ 19) out of 191 0
4 View All
All Representatives 39th most bills (tied w/ 39) out of 439 0
8 View All

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.

 

Missed Votes

the most absent among South Carolina Delegation

Clyburn missed 5.8% of votes (77 of 1,325 votes) in the 114th Congress. View Clyburn’s Profile »

compared to... rank most voting ⇢ most absent
South Carolina Delegation the most absent out of 7 1
6% missed votes View All
Serving 10+ Years 38th most absent out of 182 0
29% missed votes View All
All Representatives 66th most absent (tied w/ 1) out of 432 0
29% missed votes View All

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.

 

Bills Out of Committee

2nd most bills among South Carolina Delegation

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Clyburn introduced 3 bills in the 114th Congress that got a committee vote sending it to the floor for further consideration.

Those bills were: H.R. 295: To reauthorize the Historically Black ...; H.R. 2131: To designate the Federal building ...; H.R. 3004: To amend the Gullah/Geechee Cultural ...

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
South Carolina Delegation 2nd most bills out of 7 0
4 bills View All
Serving 10+ Years 35th most bills (tied w/ 23) out of 185 0
22 bills View All
House Democrats 7th most bills (tied w/ 10) out of 191 0
6 bills View All
All Representatives 82nd most bills (tied w/ 54) out of 439 0
24 bills View All
 

Government Transparency

2nd most supportive among South Carolina Delegation; tied with 1 other

GovTrack looked at whether Clyburn supported any of 40 government transparency bills in the House that we identified in this session. We gave Clyburn 2 points, based on one point for cosponsoring and three points for sponsoring any of these bills.

Cosponsored: H.R. 430: DISCLOSE 2015 Act; H.R. 20: Government By the People Act ...

compared to... rank least supportive ⇢ most supportive
South Carolina Delegation 2nd most supportive (tied w/ 1) out of 7 0
4 points View All
Serving 10+ Years 71st most supportive (tied w/ 22) out of 185 0
12 points View All
House Democrats 31st least supportive (tied w/ 37) out of 191 0
17 points View All
All Representatives 146th most supportive (tied w/ 63) out of 439 0
17 points View All
 

Joining Bipartisan Bills

4th least bipartisan among House Democrats

Of the 111 bills that Clyburn cosponsored, 14% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Democrat. View Cosponsored Bills »

compared to... rank least bipartisan ⇢ most bipartisan
South Carolina Delegation the most bipartisan out of 7 4
14% of bills View All
Serving 10+ Years 58th least bipartisan out of 185 1
69% of bills View All
House Democrats 4th least bipartisan out of 189 3
69% of bills View All
All Representatives 175th least bipartisan out of 435 1
69% of bills View All

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

 

Bills Introduced

38th fewest bills among All Representatives; tied with 12 others

Clyburn introduced 6 bills and resolutions in the 114th Congress. View Bills »

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
South Carolina Delegation 2nd fewest bills (tied w/ 1) out of 7 2
15 bills View All
Serving 10+ Years 21st fewest bills (tied w/ 4) out of 185 2
76 bills View All
House Democrats 16th fewest bills (tied w/ 3) out of 191 0
106 bills View All
All Representatives 38th fewest bills (tied w/ 12) out of 439 0
106 bills View All
 

Powerful Cosponsors

44th fewest bills among Serving 10+ Years; tied with 31 others

2 of Clyburn’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: H.Res. 344: Urging the discontinued use of ...; H.R. 3051: Background Check Completion Act

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
South Carolina Delegation most bills along with 2 others out of 7 0
2 bills View All
Serving 10+ Years 44th fewest bills (tied w/ 31) out of 185 0
20 bills View All
House Democrats 46th fewest bills (tied w/ 30) out of 191 0
19 bills View All
All Representatives 119th fewest bills (tied w/ 72) out of 439 0
20 bills View All
 

Cosponsors

72nd fewest cosponsors among Serving 10+ Years

Clyburn’s bills and resolutions had 175 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 »

compared to... rank fewest cosponsors ⇢ most cosponsors
South Carolina Delegation 4th fewest cosponsors out of 7 52
300 cosponsors View All
Serving 10+ Years 72nd fewest cosponsors out of 185 2
1,647 cosponsors View All
House Democrats 75th fewest cosponsors out of 191 0
1,647 cosponsors View All
All Representatives 185th fewest cosponsors out of 439 0
1,647 cosponsors View All
 

Working with the Senate

68th fewest bills among Serving 10+ Years; tied with 35 others

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 2 of Clyburn’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. 2131: To designate the Federal building ...; H.R. 3004: To amend the Gullah/Geechee Cultural ...

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
South Carolina Delegation 3rd most bills (tied w/ 1) out of 7 0
3 bills View All
Serving 10+ Years 68th fewest bills (tied w/ 35) out of 185 0
16 bills View All
House Democrats 72nd fewest bills (tied w/ 31) out of 191 0
13 bills View All
All Representatives 181st fewest bills (tied w/ 77) out of 439 0
16 bills View All

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

 

Committee Positions

Clyburn held a leadership position on 0 committees and 0 subcommittees, as either a chair (majority party) or ranking member (minority party), at the end of the session. For comparison to other Members of Congress, we assigned a score giving five points for each full committee leadership position and one point for each subcommittee leadership position. View Clyburn’s Profile »

compared to... rank lowest score ⇢ highest score
South Carolina Delegation lowest score along with 2 others out of 7 0
6 points View All
Serving 10+ Years the lowest score (tied w/ 38) out of 185 0
10 points View All
House Democrats lowest score along with 73 others out of 191 0
10 points View All
All Representatives lowest score along with 169 others out of 439 0
11 points View All
 

Writing Bipartisan Bills

Clyburn tends to gather cosponsors only on one side of the aisle. 1 of Clyburn’s 6 bills and resolutions had both a Democratic cosponsor and a Republican cosponsor in the 114th Congress.

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
South Carolina Delegation fewest bills along with 2 others out of 7 1
4 bills View All
Serving 10+ Years 7th fewest bills (tied w/ 13) out of 185 0
30 bills View All
House Democrats 8th fewest bills (tied w/ 12) out of 191 0
29 bills View All
All Representatives 23rd fewest bills (tied w/ 28) out of 439 0
30 bills View All

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.

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.