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Sen. Timothy Kaine’s 2016 Report Card

Junior Senator from Virginia
Democrat
Serving Jan 3, 2013 – Jan 3, 2019


These special statistics cover Kaine’s record during the 114th Congress (Jan 6, 2015-Jan 3, 2017) and compare him to other senators also serving at the end of the session. Last updated on Aug 24, 2017. The statistics were updated on Jan 20, 2017 and Aug 24, 2017 to improve how we counted enacted laws. Originally published on Jan 7, 2017.

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 Kaine’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.

 

Powerful Cosponsors

the fewest bills among Senate Sophomores

0 of Kaine’s bills and resolutions in the 114th 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.

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Senate Sophomores the fewest bills out of 16 0
9 bills View All
Senate Democrats the fewest bills (tied w/ 2) out of 44 0
15 bills View All
All Senators the fewest bills (tied w/ 7) out of 100 0
19 bills View All
 

Leadership Score

2nd worst score among Senate Democrats

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 114th Congress is considered, the leadership score here may differ from Kaine’s score elsewhere on GovTrack.

compared to... rank worst score ⇢ best score
Senate Sophomores 3rd worst score out of 16
View All
Senate Democrats 2nd worst score out of 44
View All
All Senators 11th worst score out of 100
View All
 

Missed Votes

3rd most absent among Senate Sophomores

Kaine missed 3.2% of votes (16 of 502 votes) in the 114th Congress. View Kaine’s Profile »

compared to... rank most voting ⇢ most absent
Senate Sophomores 3rd most absent out of 16 0
32% missed votes View All
All Senators 24th most absent (tied w/ 1) out of 100 0
32% missed votes View All
 

Joining Bipartisan Bills

3rd most bipartisan among Senate Sophomores

In this era of partisanship, it is encouraging to see Members of Congress working across the aisle. Of the 221 bills that Kaine cosponsored, 35% were introduced by a legislator who was not a Democrat. View Cosponsored Bills »

compared to... rank least bipartisan ⇢ most bipartisan
Senate Sophomores 3rd most bipartisan out of 15 11
65% of bills View All
Senate Democrats 18th most bipartisan out of 44 20
66% of bills View All
All Senators 23rd most bipartisan out of 98 11
66% of bills View All

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

 

Cosponsors

4th fewest cosponsors among Senate Democrats

Kaine’s bills and resolutions had 80 cosponsors in the 114th 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 »

compared to... rank fewest cosponsors ⇢ most cosponsors
Senate Sophomores 4th fewest cosponsors out of 16 72
367 cosponsors View All
Senate Democrats 4th fewest cosponsors out of 44 73
711 cosponsors View All
All Senators 15th fewest cosponsors out of 100 11
989 cosponsors View All
 

Bills Introduced

5th fewest bills among Senate Democrats

Kaine introduced 21 bills and resolutions in the 114th Congress. View Bills »

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Senate Sophomores 3rd fewest bills out of 16 18
73 bills View All
Senate Democrats 5th fewest bills out of 44 18
87 bills View All
All Senators 19th fewest bills out of 100 8
140 bills View All
 

Government Transparency

5th least supportive among Senate Sophomores

GovTrack looked at whether Kaine supported any of 22 government transparency bills in the Senate that we identified in this session. We gave Kaine 2 points, based on one point for cosponsoring and three points for sponsoring any of these bills.

Cosponsored: S. 229: DISCLOSE Act of 2015; S. 366: Senate Campaign Disclosure Parity Act

compared to... rank least supportive ⇢ most supportive
Senate Sophomores 5th least supportive out of 16 0
5 points View All
Senate Democrats 6th least supportive (tied w/ 7) out of 44 1
11 points View All
All Senators 45th least supportive (tied w/ 11) out of 100 0
11 points View All
 

Bills Cosponsored

7th fewest bills among Senate Democrats

Kaine cosponsored 221 bills and resolutions introduced by other Members of Congress. Cosponsorship shows a willingness to work with others to advance policy goals. View Cosponsored Bills »

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Senate Sophomores 6th fewest bills out of 16 171
429 bills View All
Senate Democrats 7th fewest bills out of 44 152
479 bills View All
All Senators 36th fewest bills out of 100 74
479 bills View All
 

Working with the House

12th fewest bills among Senate Democrats; tied with 1 other

The House and Senate often work on the same issue simultaneously by introducing companion bills in each chamber. 8 of Kaine’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. 355: Teach Safe Relationships Act of ...; S. 465: Thomasina E. Jordan Indian Tribes ...; S. 1329: A bill to remove the ...; S. 1587: Authority for the Use of ...; S. 1609: Middle School STEP Act; S. 2548: 400 Years of African-American History ...; S.Res. 239: A resolution commemorating the 75th ...; S.Con.Res. 37: A concurrent resolution recognizing the ...

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Senate Sophomores 6th fewest bills (tied w/ 1) out of 16 1
19 bills View All
Senate Democrats 12th fewest bills (tied w/ 1) out of 44 1
26 bills View All
All Senators 32nd fewest bills (tied w/ 6) out of 100 1
40 bills View All

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

 

Writing Bipartisan Bills

16th fewest bills among Senate Democrats; tied with 1 other

Kaine tends to gather cosponsors only on one side of the aisle. 10 of Kaine’s 21 bills and resolutions had both a Democratic cosponsor and a Republican cosponsor in the 114th Congress.

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Senate Sophomores 7th fewest bills (tied w/ 1) out of 16 4
17 bills View All
Senate Democrats 16th fewest bills (tied w/ 1) out of 44 3
36 bills View All
All Senators 39th fewest bills (tied w/ 3) out of 100 0
49 bills View All
 

Bills Out of Committee

32nd fewest bills among All Senators; tied with 13 others

Most bills and resolutions languish in committee without any action. Kaine introduced 3 bills in the 114th Congress that got a committee vote sending it to the floor for further consideration.

Those bills were: S. 465: Thomasina E. Jordan Indian Tribes ...; S. 2256: Co-Prescribing Saves Lives Act of ...; S. 2548: 400 Years of African-American History ...

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Senate Sophomores 7th most bills (tied w/ 2) out of 16 0
9 bills View All
Senate Democrats 17th most bills (tied w/ 6) out of 44 0
19 bills View All
All Senators 32nd fewest bills (tied w/ 13) out of 100 0
36 bills View All
 

Committee Positions

Kaine 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 Kaine’s Profile »

compared to... rank lowest score ⇢ highest score
Senate Sophomores 2nd highest score (tied w/ 8) out of 16 0
3 points View All
Senate Democrats 9th lowest score (tied w/ 15) out of 44 0
12 points View All
All Senators 22nd lowest score (tied w/ 34) out of 100 0
16 points View All
 

Laws Enacted

Kaine introduced 0 bills that became law, including via incorporation into other measures, in the 114th Congress. Keep in mind that it takes a law to repeal a law. Very few bills ever become law. View Enacted Bills »

compared to... rank fewest bills ⇢ most bills
Senate Sophomores the fewest bills (tied w/ 4) out of 16 0
5 View All
Senate Democrats the fewest bills (tied w/ 4) out of 44 0
9 View All
All Senators the fewest bills (tied w/ 14) out of 100 0
15 View All

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.

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.

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 114th Congress) 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.