The Lugar Center and Georgetown University’s McCourt School Unveil New “Bipartisan Index” of 113th Congress

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Ranking of All Members of Congress Shows Degree of Legislative Bipartisanship

May 19, 2015

For Immediate Release

May 19, 2015

Media Contacts:

Lauren Mullins

Betsy Holahan

WASHINGTON, DC – The Lugar Center, led by former U.S. Senator Richard Lugar, and Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy today jointly unveiled their newly established “Bipartisan Index,” a non-partisan tool that indicates the degree to which members of Congress are working across party lines.

“The Bipartisan Index offers the public an objective way to measure how frequently their members of Congress are cooperating with the other party on matters of policy,” said Senator Lugar.  “We hope this ranking will incentivize members of Congress to be more bipartisan when writing legislation and making co-sponsorship decisions, as well as keeping an open mind about legislation introduced by the other party.”  

“We see the Index both as a scholarly and practical exercise because at its root this project is about highlighting and promoting good governance,” said McCourt School Dean Edward Montgomery. “Excessive partisanship has hampered our government’s ability to respond to critical challenges facing the U.S. today - from our economy, to our infrastructure, to our environment. For us, the Bipartisan Index is the start of a broader, sustained conversation about the frequency and value of bipartisanship in contemporary politics.” 

The Bipartisan Index is a non-partisan ranking of all U.S. Senators and U.S. Representatives according to their sponsorship and co-sponsorship of bills. The Index measures how often a member of Congress introduces bills that succeed in attracting co-sponsors from members of the other party, and how often they in turn co-sponsor a bill introduced from across the aisle. The Index will serve as a critical resource for voters and the media.

The Bipartisan Index rankings released today include individual scores for each member in the 113th Congress.  Susan Collins (R-ME) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) had the top two scores in the Senate.  Christopher Gibson (R-NY) and Peter King (R-NY) were the top scorers in the House.  According to historical data included with the Bipartisan Index, the two most recent Congresses (112th and 113th) were the most partisan since 1993. 

In the fall of 2015, the Index will release lifetime rankings of every member of Congress going back to 1993.

For House and Senate scores, information on methodology, charts and FAQs, please click here.

For a related op-ed authored by Senator Lugar and Dr. Montgomery, please click here.

About the Lugar Center:

Under the leadership of former U.S. Senator Richard Lugar, the non-profit Lugar Center is a platform for informed debate and analysis of global issues, including nonproliferation of weapons of mass destruction, global food security, foreign assistance effectiveness and global development, energy security, and enhancing bipartisan governance. Learn more here.

About the McCourt School of Public Policy:

Founded in 1996 as the Georgetown Public Policy Institute, the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University is a top-ranked graduate school located at the center of the policy world in Washington, D.C. Our mission is to give our students the rigorous quantitative and analytic skills needed to design, implement and evaluate smart policies and to conduct policy research and recommend effective solutions on today’s most critical topics. Learn more here.