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Sen. Lindsey Graham’s 2015 Report Card

Senior Senator from South Carolina
Republican
Serving Jan 7, 2003 – Jan 3, 2021


These special year-end statistics cover Graham’s record during the 2015 legislative year (Jan 6, 2015-Dec 31, 2015) and compare him to other senators 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 Graham’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.

 

Was 2nd most absent in votes compared to All Senators

Graham missed 28.3% of votes (96 of 339 votes) in 2015. View Graham’s Profile »

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (98th percentile); All Senators (98th percentile).


 

Introduced the 5th fewest bills compared to Serving 10+ Years (tied with 1 other)

Graham introduced 11 bills and resolutions in 2015. View Bills »

Compare to all Senate Republicans (24th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (7th percentile); All Senators (13th percentile).


 

Ranked 6th most liberal compared to Senate Republicans

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 2015 is considered, the ideology score here may differ from Graham’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Republicans (9th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (59th percentile); All Senators (51st percentile).


 

Joined bipartisan bills the 8th most often compared to Senate Republicans

In this era of partisanship, it is encouraging to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. Of the 112 bills that Graham cosponsored, 29% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Republican. View Cosponsored Bills »

Compare to all Serving 10+ Years (60th percentile); Senate Republicans (85th percentile); All Senators (63rd percentile).

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


 

Got the 9th fewest cosponsors on their bills compared to Serving 10+ Years

Graham’s bills and resolutions had 85 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 Senate Republicans (26th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (15th percentile); All Senators (26th percentile).


 

Cosponsored the 15th fewest bills compared to All Senators

Graham cosponsored 112 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 Republicans (22nd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (15th percentile); All Senators (14th percentile).


 

Got their bills out of committee the 10th least often compared to Serving 10+ Years (tied with 10 others)

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Graham introduced 1 bill in 2015 that got past committee and to the floor for consideration.

Those bills were: S. 1725: Department of State, Foreign Operations, ...

Compare to all Senate Republicans (9th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (17th percentile); All Senators (19th percentile).


 

Got influential cosponsors the 26th least often compared to All Senators (tied with 22 others)

2 of Graham’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.

Those bills were: S. 1553: Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act; S. 2022: A bill to amend title ...

Compare to all Senate Republicans (20th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (17th percentile); All Senators (25th percentile).


 

Committee Positions

Graham held a leadership position on 0 committees and 3 subcommittees, as either a chair (majority party) or ranking member (minority party), at the end of the session. View Graham’s Profile »

Compare to all Senate Republicans (57th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (26th percentile); All Senators (56th percentile).


 

Government Transparency

GovTrack looked at whether Graham supported any of 19 government transparency, accountability, and effectiveness bills in the Senate that we identified in this session. We gave Graham 0 points, based on one point for cosponsoring and three points for sponsoring any of these bills.

Compare to all Senate Republicans (0th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (0th percentile); All Senators (0th percentile).


 

Laws Enacted

Graham introduced 1 bill that became law in 2015. 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. 1147: A bill to designate the ...

Compare to all Senate Republicans (50th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (52nd percentile); All Senators (59th 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.


 

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 2015 is considered, the leadership score here may differ from Graham’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Republicans (33rd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (43rd percentile); All Senators (47th percentile).


 

Working with the House

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 2 of Graham’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. 1147: A bill to designate the ...; S. 2022: A bill to amend title ...

Compare to all Senate Republicans (4th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (2nd percentile); All Senators (5th percentile).

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


 

Writing Bipartisan Bills

Graham tends to gather cosponsors only on one side of the aisle. 27% of Graham’s 11 bills and resolutions had both a Democratic cosponsor and a Republican cosponsor in 2015.

Compare to all Senate Republicans (37th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (42nd percentile); All Senators (43rd percentile).

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


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.