Thune is the senior senator from South Dakota and is a Republican. He has served since Jan 4, 2005. Thune is next up for reelection in 2022.
He is also Assistant Senate Majority Leader, a party leadership role. Party leaders focus more on setting their party’s legislative priorties than on introducing legislation.
He was previously the representative for South Dakota’s at-large district as a Republican from 1997 to 2002.
Read our 2018 Report Card for Thune.
Thune is shown as a purple triangle ▲ in our ideology-leadership chart below. Each dot is a member of the Senate positioned according to our liberal–conservative ideology score (left to right) and our leadership score (leaders are toward the top).
The chart is based on the bills Thune has sponsored and cosponsored from Jan 6, 2015 to Jul 16, 2019. See full analysis methodology.
Ratings from Advocacy Organizations
John Thune sits on the following committees:
Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation
- Chair, Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation, and the Internet
- Member, Subcommittee on Aviation and Space
- Member, Subcommittee on Manufacturing, Trade, and Consumer Protection
- Member, Subcommittee on Transportation and Safety
Senate Committee on Finance
- Chair, Subcommittee on Taxation and IRS Oversight
- Member, Subcommittee on Health Care
- Member, Subcommittee on International Trade, Customs, and Global Competitiveness
Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry
- Member, Subcommittee on Conservation, Forestry, and Natural Resources
- Member, Subcommittee on Nutrition, Agricultural Research, and Specialty Crops
- Member, Subcommittee on Rural Development and Energy
Thune was the primary sponsor of 36 bills that were enacted. The most recent include:
- S. 100: Custer County Airport Conveyance Act
- S. 2200 (115th): National Integrated Drought Information System Reauthorization Act of 2018
- S. 3367 (115th): Department of Transportation Reports Harmonization Act
- S. 3143: National Quantum Initiative Act
- S. 808: Sports Medicine Licensure Clarity Act of 2017
- S. 35: Black Hills National Cemetery Boundary Expansion Act
- S. 2844: STB Information Security Improvement Act
Does 36 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).
Thune sponsors bills primarily in these issue areas:
Taxation (23%) Transportation and Public Works (19%) Science, Technology, Communications (17%) Health (15%) Public Lands and Natural Resources (9%) Armed Forces and National Security (6%) Agriculture and Food (6%) Native Americans (6%)
Some of Thune’s most recently sponsored bills include...
- S. 1948: Chronic Disease Management Act of 2019
- S. 1722: FHA Appraiser Eligibility Expansion Act
- S. 1699: STREAMLINE Small Cell Deployment Act
- S. 1475: Charities Helping Americans Regularly Throughout the Year Act of 2019
- S. 1349: Secure Traveler Act
- S. 1001: Tribal Veterans Health Care Enhancement Act
- S. 895: Rural Hospital Regulatory Relief Act of 2019
As Assistant Senate Majority Leader, Thune may be focused on his responsibilities other than introducing legislation, such as setting the chamber’s agenda, uniting his party, and brokering deals.
From Jan 2005 to Jul 2019, Thune missed 45 of 4,457 roll call votes, which is 1.0%. This is better than the median of 1.5% among the lifetime records of senators currently serving. The chart below reports missed votes over time.
We don’t track why legislators miss votes, but it’s often due to medical absenses and major life events.
|Time Period||Votes Eligible||Missed Votes||Percent||Percentile|
The information on this page is originally sourced from a variety of materials, including: