Past Years’ National Journal Vote Ratings

Feb. 13, 2013, 2:07 p.m.

2012: Can This Congress Be Saved?
Our 2012 annual vote ratings show a Congress as paralyzed and polarized as ever. But better days may lie ahead.

2012 Senate Ratings
2012 House Ratings

2011: Divided We Stand
Our polarized Congress is starting to look more and more like a parliament at odds with the nation’s constitutional system.

2011 Senate Ratings
2011 House Ratings

2010: Pulling Apart
In the long march toward a more parliamentary and partisan Washington, National Journal‘s 2010 congressional vote ratings mark a new peak of polarization.

2010 Senate Ratings
2010 House Ratings

2009: Politics as Usual
Liberals, moderates, and conservatives stuck to their guns in 2009 — whether for ideological, partisan, parochial, or electoral reasons — stymieing much of Obama’s agenda.

2009 Senate Ratings
2009 House Ratings

2008: Determined Democratic Liberals
A small group of ideological purists in the House occasionally bucked Democratic leaders because they didn’t think that their leadership’s bills were liberal enough.

2008 Senate Ratings
2008 House Ratings

2007: The New Center
When Republicans held the majorities, the members at the ideological center voted for the agenda set by President Bush and GOP congressional leaders. Those dynamics changed radically last year.

2007 Senate Ratings
2007 House Ratings

2006: Left to Right
Legislative track records leave White House contenders open to plenty of pointed questions from voters and the news media — and provide opponents with endless opportunities for mischief and attacks.

2006 Senate Ratings
2006 House Ratings

2005: Down the Middle
In both the House and the Senate last year, Republican centrists found themselves exercising newfound influence and creating plenty of headaches for President Bush and GOP leaders.

2005 Senate Ratings
2005 House Ratings

2004: Presidential Wannabes
National Journal took an in-depth look at the Senate voting patterns of seven Republicans and six Democrats senators who are considered potential 2008 presidential candidates.

2004 Senate Ratings
2004 House Ratings

2003: How They Measured Up
National Journal‘s vote ratings for 2003 offer one measure of what happens when rank-and-file Republican lawmakers seek to be more ideologically pure than their president or GOP congressional leaders.

2003 Senate Ratings
2003 House Ratings

2002: Keeping Score
Of the seven congressional Democrats who are running for president in 2004 or have indicated they might run, Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts had the most liberal voting record last year.

2002 Senate Ratings
2002 House Ratings

2001: A Shallow Bipartisanship
National Journal‘s annual congressional vote ratings for 2001 reveal little change from previous voting patterns. House and Senate members continued to vote predominantly along partisan lines on most major issues.

2001 Senate Ratings
2001 House Ratings


2000: Gridlock, By the Numbers
The ratings of House and Senate members, based on key votes they cast last year, show that the unusually partisan patterns that took hold in 1999 continued throughout 2000.

2000 Senate Ratings
2000 House Ratings

1999: A Congress Divided
During 1999, legislative deal-making became a lost art, votes were cast to highlight partisan political differences, and polarization ruled.

1999 Senate Ratings
1999 House Ratings

1998: Managing the Middle
Shifting coalitions shaped by Democratic and GOP centrists continued to determine the outcome of key legislative initiatives and the success of both parties’ leadership strategies.

1998 Senate Ratings
1998 House Ratings

1997: Business as Usual
Last year’s bipartisanship was fleeting. National Journal‘s 1997 congressional vote ratings reveal continuing deep divisions between the two parties on everyday votes.

1997 Senate Ratings
1997 House Ratings

1996: Soft Center
The legislative agenda and the legislative output moved toward the political center this year. But the voting patterns were as strongly partisan as ever.

1996 Senate Ratings
1996 House Ratings

1995: Voting in Unison
After waiting 40 years to take control of Congress, Republicans displayed a distinctly conservative voting pattern in 1995.

1995 Senate Ratings
1995 House Ratings

1994: Epitaph for an Era
Democrats went down swinging on Capitol Hill last year. On most major issues, President Clinton and his party in Congress accentuated their differences with congressional Republicans.

1994 Senate Ratings
1994 House Ratings

1993: Choosing Sides
On social- and foreign-policy issues, as well as on economic ones, few members of either party were inclined toward bipartisan accommodation, a review of last year’s major votes reveals.

1993 Senate Ratings
1993 House Ratings

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