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Rep. Lamar Smith

Former Representative for Texas’s 21st District

pronounced luh-MAHR // smith

Smith was the representative for Texas’s 21st congressional district and was a Republican. He served from 1987 to 2018.

Photo of Rep. Lamar Smith [R-TX21, 1987-2018]

Analysis

Legislative Metrics

Read our 2018 Report Card for Smith.

Ideology–Leadership Chart

Smith is shown as a purple triangle in our ideology-leadership chart below. Each dot was a member of the House of Representatives in 2018 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 Smith sponsored and cosponsored from Jan 3, 2013 to Dec 21, 2018. See full analysis methodology.

Ratings from Advocacy Organizations

NumbersUSA: 96% Americans for Prosperity: 88% United States Chamber of Commerce: 83% FreedomWorks: 75% The Club for Growth: 55% NIAC Action: D American Civil Liberties Union: 3% League of Conservation Voters: 3% Human Rights Campaign: 0% The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws: F

Enacted Legislation

Smith was the primary sponsor of 42 bills that were enacted. The most recent include:

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Does 42 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).

Bills Sponsored

Issue Areas

Smith sponsored bills primarily in these issue areas:

Science, Technology, Communications (32%) Taxation (12%) Education (12%) Immigration (12%) Crime and Law Enforcement (8%) Commerce (8%) Energy (8%) Law (8%)

Recent Bills

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

View All » | View Cosponsors »

Voting Record

Key Votes

Smith voted Yea

Passed 338/88 on May 13, 2015.

The USA Freedom Act (H.R. 2048, Pub.L. 114–23) is a U.S. law enacted on June 2, 2015 that restored in modified form several provisions of ...

Smith voted No

Passed 357/60 on Feb 27, 2015.

This bill was the vehicle for the passage of continuing appropriations. This bill started out as the Protecting Volunteer Firefighters and Emergency Responders Act. It ...

Smith voted Nay

Passed 219/206 on Dec 11, 2014.

This bill became the vehicle for passage of the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2015 [pdf], which was approved by the House on December ...

Smith voted Aye

Smith voted Aye

Passed 304/117 on Jun 23, 2011.

The Leahy–Smith America Invents Act (AIA) is a United States federal statute that was passed by Congress and was signed into law by President Barack ...

Smith voted Yea

Passed 216/139 on Dec 21, 2010.

Smith voted Yea

Passed 310/106 on Oct 22, 2009.

Smith voted Yea

Passed 240/179 on Jun 3, 2009.

Missed Votes

From Jan 1987 to Dec 2018, Smith missed 630 of 19,944 roll call votes, which is 3.2%. This is on par with the median of 2.5% among the lifetime records of representatives serving in Dec 2018. 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.

Show the numbers...

Primary Sources

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