Key Votes

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Vote Smart provides easy access to congressional and state voting records and maintains a collection of key votes grouped by issue. Vote Smart uses the following criteria to select key votes:

  1. The vote should be helpful in portraying how a member stands on a particular issue
  2. The vote should be clear for any person to understand
  3. The vote has received media attention
  4. The vote was passed or defeated by a very close margin
  5. Occasionally, if a specific bill is consistently inquired about on the Voter's Research Hotline, the vote will be added

Vote Smart provides a summary of the version of the bill text associated with each selected key vote. Our summaries are written by Vote Smart's staff and interns, who adhere to our strict policies and procedures in order to guarantee absolute impartiality and accuracy. They do not necessarily reflect the content of the final version of the bill, but rather the version voted on in that stage. While many procedural votes take place before a full chamber vote, our voting stages reflect the final reading of each chamber vote. Each key vote selection is reviewed by the project's community of advisors, who are political scientists and journalists from all fifty states.

For more information about the legislative process, see here.


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Date State Bill No. Title Outcome
Dec. 19, 1998 National H Res 611 Impeachment Resolution: Article Three Resolution Passed - House (228 - 206)
Dec. 19, 1998 National H Res 611 Impeachment Resolution: Article Three Resolution Failed - House (205 - 229)
Dec. 19, 1998 National H Res 611 Impeachment Resolution: Article Three Resolution Failed - House (148 - 285)
Dec. 19, 1998 National H Res 611 Impeachment Resolution: Article Three Resolution Passed - House (221 - 212)
Oct. 21, 1998 National HR 4328 Appropriations bill FY99, Omnibus Conference Report Adopted - Senate (65 - 29)
Oct. 20, 1998 National HR 4328 Appropriations bill FY99, Omnibus Conference Report Adopted - House (333 - 95)
Oct. 13, 1998 National S 1260 Securities Litigation Conference Report Adopted - House (319 - 82)
Oct. 9, 1998 National HR 3150 Bankruptcy Reform bill Conference Report Adopted - House (300 - 125)
Oct. 8, 1998 National H Amdt 923 Contraceptive Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (224 - 200)
Oct. 8, 1998 National HR 4194 FY 1999 VA-HUD Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - Senate (96 - 1)
Oct. 8, 1998 National S 442 Internet Tax Freedom bill Bill Passed - Senate (96 - 2)
Oct. 7, 1998 National HR 4104 Appropriations bill FY99, Treasury, Postal Service Conference Report Adopted - House (290 - 137)
Oct. 7, 1998 National HR 3694 Intelligence FY99 Authorization bill Conference Report Adopted - House (337 - 83)
Oct. 6, 1998 National HR 4194 FY 1999 VA-HUD Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - House (409 - 14)
Oct. 6, 1998 National HR 4101 Agriculture FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - Senate (55 - 43)
Oct. 5, 1998 National HR 4655 Iraqi Liberation Act of 1998 Bill Passed - House (360 - 38)
Oct. 5, 1998 National HR 1154 Indian Federal Recognition Administrative Procedures Bill Failed - House (190 - 208)
Oct. 2, 1998 National HR 4101 Agriculture FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - House (333 - 53)
Oct. 1, 1998 National HR 3616 Defense Department FY99 Authorization bill Conference Report Adopted - Senate (96 - 2)
Sept. 29, 1998 National HR 6 Higher Education Programs Authorization Extension bill Conference Report Adopted - Senate (96 - 0)
Sept. 29, 1998 National HR 4103 Defense Department FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - Senate (94 - 2)
Sept. 28, 1998 National HR 4060 Energy FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - House (389 - 25)
Sept. 28, 1998 National HR 4103 Defense Department FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - House (369 - 43)
Sept. 26, 1998 National HR 4579 Tax Cut bill Bill Passed - House (229 - 195)
Sept. 25, 1998 National H Amdt 914 Save Social Security Act Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (210 - 216)
Sept. 25, 1998 National HR 4578 Social Security Account Protection bill Bill Passed - House (240 - 188)
Sept. 25, 1998 National HR 2621 Reciprocal Trade Agreement Bill Bill Failed - House (180 - 243)
Sept. 24, 1998 National HR 4112 Legislative Branch FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - House (356 - 65)
Sept. 24, 1998 National HR 3616 Defense Department FY99 Authorization bill Conference Report Adopted - House (373 - 50)
Sept. 24, 1998 National HR 3736 Nonimmigrant Specialty Workers bill Bill Passed - House (288 - 133)
Sept. 18, 1998 National HR 1122 Partial-Birth/Late-Term Abortion bill Veto Override Failed - Senate (64 - 36)
Sept. 17, 1998 National H Amdt 907 US Army School of the Americas Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (201 - 212)
Sept. 17, 1998 National HR 4569 Appropriations Bill FY99, Foreign Operations Bill Passed - House (255 - 161)
Sept. 16, 1998 National H Amdt 887 Illegal Drug Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (291 - 133)
Sept. 15, 1998 National S 2073 Juvenile Crime Control and Delinquency Prevention Act Bill Passed - House (280 - 126)
Sept. 9, 1998 National S 1873 American Missile Protection bill Cloture Not Invoked - Senate (59 - 41)
Sept. 3, 1998 National HR 4104 Appropriations bill FY99, Treasury, Postal Service Bill Passed - Senate (91 - 5)
Sept. 1, 1998 National S Amdt 3506 Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Amendment Amendment Adopted - Senate (49 - 44)
Aug. 7, 1998 National H Amdt 871 Adoption Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (227 - 192)
Aug. 7, 1998 National H Amdt 869 Illegal Drug Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (250 - 169)
Aug. 7, 1998 National HR 4380 District of Columbia FY99 Appropriations bill Bill Passed - House (214 - 206)
Aug. 6, 1998 National H Amdt 862 Federal Campaign Finance Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (147 - 222)
Aug. 6, 1998 National H Amdt 865 Abortion Funding Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (180 - 243)
Aug. 6, 1998 National H Amdt 874 Low Income Educational Scholarship Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (214 - 208)
Aug. 6, 1998 National HR 2183 Campaign Finance Reform bill Bill Passed - House (252 - 179)
Aug. 3, 1998 National H Amdt 690 Shays Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (237 - 186)
July 30, 1998 National S Amdt 3379 Federal Election Commission Term Length Amendment Not Tabled - Senate (45 - 54)
July 30, 1998 National H Amdt 747 Voter Registration Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (165 - 260)
July 30, 1998 National H J Res 120 Vietnam Trade Waiver Disapproval resolution Joint Resolution Failed - House (163 - 260)
July 29, 1998 National S Amdt 3359 Married Tax Filing Amendment Amendment Not Tabled - Senate (48 - 51)
July 29, 1998 National HR 4194 Appropriations bill FY99, Veterans Affairs, HUD Bill Passed - House (259 - 164)
July 24, 1998 National H Amdt 776 Patients' Bill of Rights Act Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (212 - 217)
July 24, 1998 National HR 4250 Patient Protection bill Bill Passed - House (216 - 210)
July 23, 1998 National HR 1122 Partial-Birth/Late-Term Abortion bill Veto Override Passed - House (296 - 132)
July 23, 1998 National S Amdt 3258 Temporary Farm Workers Amendment Amendment Adopted - Senate (68 - 31)
July 23, 1998 National S Amdt 3266 Internet Gambling Amendment Amendment Adopted - Senate (90 - 10)
July 23, 1998 National HR 4193 Interior Department FY99 Appropriations bill Bill Passed - House (245 - 181)
July 22, 1998 National S Amdt 3263 Phone Recording Amendment Amendment Rejected - Senate (50 - 50)
July 22, 1998 National H J Res 121 Disapproval of 'Normal Trade Relations' Status with China Joint Resolution Failed - House (166 - 264)
July 21, 1998 National S Amdt 3230 Gun Lock Requirement Amendment Amendment Tabled - Senate (61 - 39)
July 21, 1998 National H Amdt 753 National Endowment for the Arts Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (253 - 173)
July 21, 1998 National HR 4112 Legislative Branch FY99 Appropriations bill Bill Passed - Senate (90 - 9)
July 20, 1998 National H Amdt 744 Labor Political Activity Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (150 - 248)
July 20, 1998 National H Amdt 716 Noncitizen Campaign Contribution Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (267 - 131)
July 16, 1998 National H Amdt 728 Federal Health Plan Contraceptive Coverage Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (224 - 198)
July 16, 1998 National H Amdt 723 Increase FEC Funding Amendment Adopted - House (214 - 210)
July 16, 1998 National HR 4104 Appropriations bill FY99, Treasury, Postal Service Bill Passed - House (218 - 203)
July 15, 1998 National HR 3682 Child Custody Protection Act Bill Passed - House (276 - 150)
July 14, 1998 National H Amdt 694 Express Advocacy Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (201 - 219)
July 9, 1998 National HR 6 Higher Education Programs Authorization Extension bill Bill Passed - Senate (96 - 1)
July 7, 1998 National S Amdt 3062 Space Station Termination Amendment Amendment Rejected - Senate (33 - 66)
June 25, 1998 National S Amdt 2981 Military Closure Amendment Amendment Adopted - Senate (48 - 45)
June 25, 1998 National S Amdt 3011 Separate Housing Amendment Amendment Rejected - Senate (39 - 53)
June 25, 1998 National S Amdt 2794 Overseas Military Hospital Abortions Amendment Amendment Rejected - Senate (44 - 49)
June 25, 1998 National HR 4112 Legislative Branch FY99 Appropriations bill Bill Passed - House (235 - 179)
Date No. Title Outcome
12/19 H Res 611 Impeachment Resolution: Article Three Resolution Passed - House (228 - 206)
12/19 H Res 611 Impeachment Resolution: Article Three Resolution Failed - House (205 - 229)
12/19 H Res 611 Impeachment Resolution: Article Three Resolution Failed - House (148 - 285)
12/19 H Res 611 Impeachment Resolution: Article Three Resolution Passed - House (221 - 212)
10/21 HR 4328 Appropriations bill FY99, Omnibus Conference Report Adopted - Senate (65 - 29)
10/20 HR 4328 Appropriations bill FY99, Omnibus Conference Report Adopted - House (333 - 95)
10/13 S 1260 Securities Litigation Conference Report Adopted - House (319 - 82)
10/09 HR 3150 Bankruptcy Reform bill Conference Report Adopted - House (300 - 125)
10/08 H Amdt 923 Contraceptive Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (224 - 200)
10/08 HR 4194 FY 1999 VA-HUD Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - Senate (96 - 1)
10/08 S 442 Internet Tax Freedom bill Bill Passed - Senate (96 - 2)
10/07 HR 4104 Appropriations bill FY99, Treasury, Postal Service Conference Report Adopted - House (290 - 137)
10/07 HR 3694 Intelligence FY99 Authorization bill Conference Report Adopted - House (337 - 83)
10/06 HR 4194 FY 1999 VA-HUD Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - House (409 - 14)
10/06 HR 4101 Agriculture FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - Senate (55 - 43)
10/05 HR 4655 Iraqi Liberation Act of 1998 Bill Passed - House (360 - 38)
10/05 HR 1154 Indian Federal Recognition Administrative Procedures Bill Failed - House (190 - 208)
10/02 HR 4101 Agriculture FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - House (333 - 53)
10/01 HR 3616 Defense Department FY99 Authorization bill Conference Report Adopted - Senate (96 - 2)
9/29 HR 6 Higher Education Programs Authorization Extension bill Conference Report Adopted - Senate (96 - 0)
9/29 HR 4103 Defense Department FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - Senate (94 - 2)
9/28 HR 4060 Energy FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - House (389 - 25)
9/28 HR 4103 Defense Department FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - House (369 - 43)
9/26 HR 4579 Tax Cut bill Bill Passed - House (229 - 195)
9/25 H Amdt 914 Save Social Security Act Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (210 - 216)
9/25 HR 4578 Social Security Account Protection bill Bill Passed - House (240 - 188)
9/25 HR 2621 Reciprocal Trade Agreement Bill Bill Failed - House (180 - 243)
9/24 HR 4112 Legislative Branch FY99 Appropriations bill Conference Report Adopted - House (356 - 65)
9/24 HR 3616 Defense Department FY99 Authorization bill Conference Report Adopted - House (373 - 50)
9/24 HR 3736 Nonimmigrant Specialty Workers bill Bill Passed - House (288 - 133)
9/18 HR 1122 Partial-Birth/Late-Term Abortion bill Veto Override Failed - Senate (64 - 36)
9/17 H Amdt 907 US Army School of the Americas Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (201 - 212)
9/17 HR 4569 Appropriations Bill FY99, Foreign Operations Bill Passed - House (255 - 161)
9/16 H Amdt 887 Illegal Drug Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (291 - 133)
9/15 S 2073 Juvenile Crime Control and Delinquency Prevention Act Bill Passed - House (280 - 126)
9/09 S 1873 American Missile Protection bill Cloture Not Invoked - Senate (59 - 41)
9/03 HR 4104 Appropriations bill FY99, Treasury, Postal Service Bill Passed - Senate (91 - 5)
9/01 S Amdt 3506 Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Amendment Amendment Adopted - Senate (49 - 44)
8/07 H Amdt 871 Adoption Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (227 - 192)
8/07 H Amdt 869 Illegal Drug Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (250 - 169)
8/07 HR 4380 District of Columbia FY99 Appropriations bill Bill Passed - House (214 - 206)
8/06 H Amdt 862 Federal Campaign Finance Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (147 - 222)
8/06 H Amdt 865 Abortion Funding Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (180 - 243)
8/06 H Amdt 874 Low Income Educational Scholarship Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (214 - 208)
8/06 HR 2183 Campaign Finance Reform bill Bill Passed - House (252 - 179)
8/03 H Amdt 690 Shays Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (237 - 186)
7/30 S Amdt 3379 Federal Election Commission Term Length Amendment Not Tabled - Senate (45 - 54)
7/30 H Amdt 747 Voter Registration Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (165 - 260)
7/30 H J Res 120 Vietnam Trade Waiver Disapproval resolution Joint Resolution Failed - House (163 - 260)
7/29 S Amdt 3359 Married Tax Filing Amendment Amendment Not Tabled - Senate (48 - 51)
7/29 HR 4194 Appropriations bill FY99, Veterans Affairs, HUD Bill Passed - House (259 - 164)
7/24 H Amdt 776 Patients' Bill of Rights Act Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (212 - 217)
7/24 HR 4250 Patient Protection bill Bill Passed - House (216 - 210)
7/23 HR 1122 Partial-Birth/Late-Term Abortion bill Veto Override Passed - House (296 - 132)
7/23 S Amdt 3258 Temporary Farm Workers Amendment Amendment Adopted - Senate (68 - 31)
7/23 S Amdt 3266 Internet Gambling Amendment Amendment Adopted - Senate (90 - 10)
7/23 HR 4193 Interior Department FY99 Appropriations bill Bill Passed - House (245 - 181)
7/22 S Amdt 3263 Phone Recording Amendment Amendment Rejected - Senate (50 - 50)
7/22 H J Res 121 Disapproval of 'Normal Trade Relations' Status with China Joint Resolution Failed - House (166 - 264)
7/21 S Amdt 3230 Gun Lock Requirement Amendment Amendment Tabled - Senate (61 - 39)
7/21 H Amdt 753 National Endowment for the Arts Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (253 - 173)
7/21 HR 4112 Legislative Branch FY99 Appropriations bill Bill Passed - Senate (90 - 9)
7/20 H Amdt 744 Labor Political Activity Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (150 - 248)
7/20 H Amdt 716 Noncitizen Campaign Contribution Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (267 - 131)
7/16 H Amdt 728 Federal Health Plan Contraceptive Coverage Amendment Amendment Adopted - House (224 - 198)
7/16 H Amdt 723 Increase FEC Funding Amendment Adopted - House (214 - 210)
7/16 HR 4104 Appropriations bill FY99, Treasury, Postal Service Bill Passed - House (218 - 203)
7/15 HR 3682 Child Custody Protection Act Bill Passed - House (276 - 150)
7/14 H Amdt 694 Express Advocacy Amendment Amendment Rejected - House (201 - 219)
7/09 HR 6 Higher Education Programs Authorization Extension bill Bill Passed - Senate (96 - 1)
7/07 S Amdt 3062 Space Station Termination Amendment Amendment Rejected - Senate (33 - 66)
6/25 S Amdt 2981 Military Closure Amendment Amendment Adopted - Senate (48 - 45)
6/25 S Amdt 3011 Separate Housing Amendment Amendment Rejected - Senate (39 - 53)
6/25 S Amdt 2794 Overseas Military Hospital Abortions Amendment Amendment Rejected - Senate (44 - 49)
6/25 HR 4112 Legislative Branch FY99 Appropriations bill Bill Passed - House (235 - 179)

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