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Rep. Joseph Kennedy III’s 2015 Report Card

Representative from Massachusetts's 4th District
Democrat
Serving Jan 3, 2013 – Jan 3, 2021


These year-end statistics cover Kennedy’s record during the 2015 legislative year (Jan 6, 2015-Dec 31, 2015) and compare him to other representatives serving at the end of that period. Last updated on Jan 9, 2016.

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 Kennedy’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.

 

Held the fewest committee positions compared to Massachusetts Delegation (tied with 1 other)

Kennedy 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 Kennedy’s Profile »

Compare to all Massachusetts Delegation (0th percentile); House Sophomores (0th percentile); House Democrats (0th percentile); Safe House Seats (0th percentile); All Representatives (0th percentile).


 

Supported government transparency the 3rd least often compared to Massachusetts Delegation (tied with 1 other)

GovTrack looked at whether Kennedy supported any of 28 government transparency, accountability, and effectiveness bills in the House that we identified in this session. We gave Kennedy 1 point, based on one point for cosponsoring and three points for sponsoring any of these bills.

Kennedy cosponsored H.R. 20: Government By the People Act ...

Compare to all Massachusetts Delegation (22nd percentile); House Sophomores (33rd percentile); House Democrats (9th percentile); Safe House Seats (41st percentile); All Representatives (43rd percentile).


 

Introduced the 5th fewest bills compared to House Sophomores (tied with 2 others)

Kennedy introduced 5 bills and resolutions in 2015. View Bills »

Compare to all Massachusetts Delegation (11th percentile); House Sophomores (5th percentile); House Democrats (13th percentile); Safe House Seats (14th percentile); All Representatives (15th percentile).


 

Got the 13th fewest cosponsors on their bills compared to House Sophomores

Kennedy’s bills and resolutions had 59 cosponsors in 2015. 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 Massachusetts Delegation (44th percentile); House Sophomores (16th percentile); House Democrats (24th percentile); Safe House Seats (25th percentile); All Representatives (27th percentile).


 

Cosponsored the 38th fewest bills compared to House Democrats

Kennedy cosponsored 157 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 Massachusetts Delegation (22nd percentile); House Sophomores (25th percentile); House Democrats (19th percentile); Safe House Seats (41st percentile); All Representatives (40th percentile).


 

Joined bipartisan bills the 100th most often compared to All Representatives

In this era of partisanship, it is encouraging to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. Of the 157 bills that Kennedy cosponsored, 30% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Democrat. View Cosponsored Bills »

Compare to all Massachusetts Delegation (56th percentile); House Sophomores (63rd percentile); House Democrats (52nd percentile); Safe House Seats (79th percentile); All Representatives (77th percentile).

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


 

Laws Enacted

Kennedy introduced 0 bills that became law in 2015. Keep in mind that it takes a law to repeal a law. Very few bills ever become law.

Compare to all Massachusetts Delegation (0th percentile); House Sophomores (0th percentile); House Democrats (0th percentile); Safe House Seats (0th percentile); All Representatives (0th percentile).

A bill or joint resolution is considered enacted if it or an exactly identical bill to it is enacted as law. We only consider bills that the legislator was the primary sponsor of. While a legislator may lay claim to authoring other bills that became law, such as through incorporation into larger bills, these cases are difficult for us to track quantitatively.


 

Bills Out of Committee

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Kennedy introduced 0 bills in 2015 that got past committee and to the floor for consideration.

Compare to all Massachusetts Delegation (0th percentile); House Sophomores (0th percentile); House Democrats (0th percentile); Safe House Seats (0th percentile); All Representatives (0th percentile).


 

Powerful Cosponsors

0 of Kennedy’s bills and resolutions in 2015 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.

Compare to all Massachusetts Delegation (0th percentile); House Sophomores (0th percentile); House Democrats (0th percentile); Safe House Seats (0th percentile); All Representatives (0th percentile).


 

Working with the Senate

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 1 of Kennedy’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. 840: STEM Gateways Act

Compare to all Massachusetts Delegation (33rd percentile); House Sophomores (26th percentile); House Democrats (30th percentile); Safe House Seats (29th percentile); All Representatives (29th percentile).

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


 

Missed Votes

Kennedy missed 1.8% of votes (13 of 704 votes) in 2015. View Kennedy’s Profile »

Compare to all Massachusetts Delegation (33rd percentile); House Sophomores (58th percentile); Safe House Seats (49th percentile); All Representatives (51st percentile).

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.


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.

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 2015) 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.