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Rep. James Oberstar

Former Representative from Minnesota’s 8th District, Democrat

Oberstar, a Democrat, was the representative for Minnesota's 8th congressional district from 1975 to 2010.

Photo of Rep. James Oberstar [D-MN8, 1975-2010]


Our unique analysis of the bills Oberstar sponsored and cosponsored provides insight into his position in the House of Representatives.

Each dot in the chart below was a member of the House of Representatives in 2010. The dots are positioned horizontally according to our progressive—conservative ideology score and vertically according to our leadership score (leaders toward the top). Oberstar is shown as a purple triangle. (analysis methodology)

Enacted Legislation

Oberstar was the primary sponsor of 49 bills that were enacted. The most recent include:

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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 about one third or more 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

Oberstar sponsored bills primarily in these issue areas:

Transportation and Public Works (25%) Government Operations and Politics (15%) Economics and Public Finance (12%) Environmental Protection (12%) Science, Technology, Communications (10%) Law (10%) Emergency Management (9%) Commerce (8%)

Recent Bills

Some of Oberstar’s most recently sponsored bills include...

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Voting Record

Key Votes

Oberstar’s Vote Vote Description
Nay S. 3729 (111th): National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act of 2010
Sep 29, 2010. Passed 304/118.
Yea H.R. 31 (111th): Lumbee Recognition Act
Jun 3, 2009. Passed 240/179.
Not Voting H.Res. 801 (110th): Providing for consideration of the bill (H.R. 3688) to implement the United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement.
Nov 7, 2007. Passed 349/55.
No H.R. 1908 (110th): Patent Reform Act of 2007
Sep 7, 2007. Passed 220/175.
Nay H.R. 1830 (110th): To extend the authorities of the Andean Trade Preference Act until February 29, 2008.
Jun 27, 2007. Passed 365/59.

Missed Votes

From Jan 1975 to Dec 2010, Oberstar missed 804 of 21,297 roll call votes, which is 3.8%. This is on par with the median of 3.1% among the lifetime records of representatives serving in Dec 2010. ProPublica has tracked 28 explanations for these missed votes. The chart below reports missed votes over time.

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Primary Sources

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