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Sen. Richard Durbin’s 2013 Report Card

Senate Majority Whip
Senior Senator from Illinois
Democrat
Served Jan 7, 2003 – Jan 3, 2015


These year-end statistics cover Durbin’s record during the 2013 legislative year (Jan 3, 2013-Dec 26, 2013) and compare him to other senators serving at the end of that period. Last updated on Dec 1, 2014. On Dec. 1, 2014, the statistics were updated to remove Sen. Schatz from the list of Senate sophomores. Schatz only served for several days in the preceding Congress.

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 Durbin was busy being Senate Majority 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 Durbin’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.

 

Supported government transparency the 3rd most often compared to All Senators

GovTrack looked at whether Durbin supported any of 8 government transparency, accountability, and effectiveness bills in the Senate that we identified in this session. We gave Durbin 6 points, based on one point for cosponsoring and three points for sponsoring any of these bills.

Durbin sponsored S. 1207: Cameras in the Courtroom Act

Durbin cosponsored S. 375: Senate Campaign Disclosure Parity Act; S. 405: Sunshine in the Courtroom Act ...; S. 1130: Ending Secret Law Act

Compare to all Senate Democrats (94th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (96th percentile); All Senators (97th percentile).


 

Got bicameral support on the 3rd most bills compared to All Senators (tied with 1 other)

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 15 of Durbin’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. 113: Know Before You Owe Private ...; S. 262: Veterans Education Equity Act of ...; S. 565: Mississippi River Navigation Sustainment Act; S. 566: Water Infrastructure Now Public-Private Partnership ...; S. 718: Increasing American Jobs Through Greater ...; S. 796: A bill to designate the ...; S. 846: Family and Medical Leave Inclusion ...; S. 857: Family and Medical Leave Inclusion ...; S. 1207: Cameras in the Courtroom Act; S. 1399: A bill to amend the ...; S. 1410: Smarter Sentencing Act of 2013; S. 1503: School Access to Emergency Epinephrine ...; S. 1559: Benefits Fairness for Filipino Veterans ...; S. 1659: POST Act of 2013; S. 1704: Affordable College Textbook Act

Compare to all Senate Democrats (94th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (95th percentile); All Senators (96th percentile).

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


 

Cosponsored the 4th most bills compared to Serving 10+ Years

Durbin cosponsored 197 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 Democrats (83rd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (93rd percentile); All Senators (89th percentile).


 

Ranked 9th most liberal compared to Serving 10+ Years

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 2013 is considered, the ideology score here may differ from Durbin’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Democrats (30th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (14th percentile); All Senators (17th percentile).


 

Got influential cosponsors the 9th most often compared to All Senators (tied with 4 others)

6 of Durbin’s bills and resolutions in 2013 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. 1207: Cameras in the Courtroom Act; S. 1410: Smarter Sentencing Act of 2013; S. 1659: POST Act of 2013; S. 1736: SERVe Act; S.Res. 165: A resolution calling for the ...; S.Res. 318: A resolution expressing the sense ...

Compare to all Senate Democrats (79th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (80th percentile); All Senators (87th percentile).


 

Introduced the 13th most bills compared to All Senators

Durbin introduced 41 bills and resolutions in 2013. View Bills »

Compare to all Senate Democrats (79th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (80th percentile); All Senators (87th percentile).


 

Joined bipartisan bills the 13th least often compared to Serving 10+ Years

Of the 197 bills that Durbin cosponsored, 17% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Democrat. View Cosponsored Bills »

Compare to all Senate Democrats (42nd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (22nd percentile); All Senators (23rd percentile).

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


 

Got the 15th most cosponsors on their bills compared to All Senators

Durbin’s bills and resolutions had 231 cosponsors in 2013. 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 Democrats (74th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (77th percentile); All Senators (85th percentile).


 

Ranked the 17th top leader compared to All Senators

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 2013 is considered, the leadership score here may differ from Durbin’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

Compare to all Senate Democrats (68th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (71st percentile); All Senators (83rd percentile).


 

Got their bills out of committee the 18th most often compared to All Senators (tied with 4 others)

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Durbin introduced 5 bills in 2013 that got past committee and to the floor for consideration.

Those bills were: S. 718: Increasing American Jobs Through Greater ...; S. 796: A bill to designate the ...; S. 1429: Department of Defense Appropriations Act, ...; S.Res. 165: A resolution calling for the ...; S.Res. 318: A resolution expressing the sense ...

Compare to all Senate Democrats (68th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (68th percentile); All Senators (78th percentile).


 

Committee Positions

Durbin 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. View Durbin’s Profile »

Compare to all Senate Democrats (23rd percentile); Serving 10+ Years (5th percentile); All Senators (18th percentile).


 

Laws Enacted

Durbin introduced 0 bills that became law in 2013. Keep in mind that it takes a law to repeal a law. Very few bills ever become law.

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

We only count enacted bills (and joint resolutions) that the legislator was the primary sponsor of. While a legislator may lay claim to authoring other bills that became law, such as through companion bills or incorporation into larger bills, these cases are difficult for us to track quantitatively.


 

Writing Bipartisan Bills

Durbin tends to gather cosponsors only on one side of the aisle. 32% of Durbin’s 41 bills and resolutions had both a Democratic cosponsor and a Republican cosponsor in 2013.

Compare to all Senate Democrats (45th percentile); Serving 10+ Years (50th percentile); All Senators (51st percentile).

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


 

Missed Votes

Durbin missed 0.0% of votes (0 of 291 votes) in 2013. View Durbin’s Profile »

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


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 2013) was the 113th Congress (freshmen) or 112th (sophomores). Members of Congress who took office within the last few months of a Congress are considered freshmen in the next Congress as well.