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Sen. John Thune’s 2020 Report Card

Senate Minority Whip
Senior Senator from South Dakota
Republican
Serving Jan 4, 2005 – Jan 3, 2023


These statistics cover Thune’s record during the 116th Congress (Jan 3, 2019-Jan 3, 2021) and compare him to other senators also serving at the end of the session. Last updated on Jan 30, 2021.

Members of Congress with party leadership roles often do not participate in the legislative process in the same way as other Members of Congress. Since Thune was busy being Senate Minority Whip, the metrics of legislative activity listed below may not apply.

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 Thune’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.

 

Cosponsored the 2nd fewest bills compared to Senate Party Leaders

Thune cosponsored 146 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 Senate Party Leaders (7th percentile); Senate Republicans (15th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (11th percentile); All Senators (9th percentile).


 

Got their bills out of committee the 4th least often compared to Senate Party Leaders (tied with 1 other)

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Thune introduced 8 bills in the 116th Congress that got past committee and to the floor for consideration.

Those bills were: S. 21: Pay Our Coast Guard Act; S. 100: Custer County Airport Conveyance Act; S. 151: Pallone-Thune TRACED Act; S. 279: Tribal School Federal Insurance Parity ...; S. 1349: Secure Traveler Act; S. 2597: Learning Excellence and Good Examples ...; S. 4159: E-SIGN Modernization Act of 2020; S.J.Res. 74: A joint resolution requesting the ...

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (21st percentile); Senate Republicans (31st percentile); Serving 10+ Years (28th percentile); All Senators (35th percentile).


 

Held the 3rd fewest committee positions compared to Senate Party Leaders (tied with 3 others)

Thune held a leadership position on 0 committees and 2 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 Thune’s Profile »

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (14th percentile); Senate Republicans (19th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (4th percentile); All Senators (19th percentile).


 

Wrote the 4th fewest laws compared to Senate Party Leaders (tied with 3 others)

Thune introduced 2 bills that became law, including via incorporation into other measures, in the 116th 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: S. 100: Custer County Airport Conveyance Act; S. 151: Pallone-Thune TRACED Act

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (21st percentile); Senate Republicans (13th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (7th percentile); All Senators (14th percentile).

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. We also exclude bills where the sponsor’s original intent is not in the final bill.


 

Was 8th most present in votes compared to Serving 10+ Years (tied with 1 other)

Thune missed 0.6% of votes (4 of 720 votes) in the 116th Congress. View Thune’s Profile »

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (29th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (13th percentile); All Senators (14th percentile).


 

Joined bipartisan bills the 9th least often compared to Serving 10+ Years (tied with 1 other)

Of the 146 bills that Thune cosponsored, 21% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Republican. View Cosponsored Bills »

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (21st percentile); Senate Republicans (17th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (15th percentile); All Senators (19th percentile).

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


 

Bills Introduced

Thune introduced 47 bills and resolutions in the 116th Congress. View Bills »

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (43rd percentile); Senate Republicans (52nd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (43rd percentile); All Senators (42nd percentile).


 

Powerful Cosponsors

7 of Thune’s bills and resolutions in the 116th 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: S. 151: Pallone-Thune TRACED Act; S. 215: Death Tax Repeal Act of ...; S. 279: Tribal School Federal Insurance Parity ...; S. 765: Digital Goods and Services Tax ...; S. 1475: Charities Helping Americans Regularly Throughout ...; S. 3154: Tribal Child Support Enforcement Act; S. 3479: Cover Crop Flexibility Act of ...

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (43rd percentile); Senate Republicans (62nd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (46th percentile); All Senators (52nd percentile).


 

Working with the House

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 15 of Thune’s bills and resolutions had a companion bill in the House. 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: S. 151: Pallone-Thune TRACED Act; S. 279: Tribal School Federal Insurance Parity ...; S. 604: Mobile Workforce State Income Tax ...; S. 680: PHIT Act of 2019; S. 700: NEW GIG Act of 2019; S. 765: Digital Goods and Services Tax ...; S. 1475: Charities Helping Americans Regularly Throughout ...; S. 2597: Learning Excellence and Good Examples ...; S. 2984: Multifamily Depreciation Parity Act of ...; S. 3447: RUSH Act of 2020; S. 3918: Paycheck Protection for Producers Act; S. 4015: Rural Connectivity Advancement Program Act ...; S. 4063: Impact Aid Co­ro­na­vi­rus Relief Act; S. 4275: Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Integrity Act; S. 4616: Gilt Edge Mine Conveyance Act

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (50th percentile); Senate Republicans (69th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (48th percentile); All Senators (51st percentile).

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


 

Writing Bipartisan Bills

In this era of partisanship, it is important to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. 32 of Thune’s 47 bills and resolutions had a cosponsor from a different political party than the party Thune caucused with in the 116th Congress.

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (64th percentile); Senate Republicans (73rd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (63rd percentile); All Senators (69th percentile).

Cosponsors who caucused with neither the Democratic nor Republican party do not count toward this statistic.


 

Cosponsors

Thune’s bills and resolutions had 364 cosponsors in the 116th 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 Senate Party Leaders (36th percentile); Senate Republicans (73rd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (44th percentile); All Senators (57th percentile).


 

Ideology Score

Our unique ideology analysis assigns a score to Members of Congress according to their legislative behavior by how similar the pattern of bills and resolutions they cosponsor are to other Members of Congress.

For more, see our methodology. Note that because on this page only legislative activity in the 116th Congress is considered, the ideology score here may differ from Thune’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (64th percentile); Senate Republicans (37th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (74th percentile); All Senators (67th percentile).


 

Leadership Score

Our unique leadership analysis looks at who is cosponsoring whose bills. A higher score shows a greater ability to get cosponsors on bills.

For more, see our methodology. Note that because on this page only legislative activity in the 116th Congress is considered, the leadership score here may differ from Thune’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Party Leaders (43rd percentile); Senate Republicans (73rd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (52nd percentile); All Senators (67th percentile).


Additional Notes

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 116th Congress) was the 116th Congress (freshmen) or 115th (sophomores). Members of Congress who took office within the last few months of a Congress are considered freshmen in the next Congress as well.