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.


results per page:
Date State Bill No. Title Outcome
Dec. 24, 2009 National HR 3590 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Bill Passed - Senate (60 - 39)
Dec. 24, 2009 National HR 4314 Increasing the National Public Debt Limit Bill Passed - Senate (60 - 39)
Dec. 23, 2009 National HR 3590 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Cloture Invoked - Senate (60 - 39)
Dec. 16, 2009 National HR 2847 Employment, Infrastructure, and Transportation Appropriations Concurrence Vote Passed - House (217 - 212)
Dec. 16, 2009 National HR 4314 Increasing the National Public Debt Limit Bill Passed - House (218 - 214)
Dec. 13, 2009 National HR 3288 2009-2010 Omnibus Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - Senate (57 - 35)
Dec. 10, 2009 National HR 3288 2009-2010 Omnibus Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - House (221 - 202)
Dec. 3, 2009 National HR 4154 Estate Tax Law Amendments and Reinstatement of PAYGO Bill Passed - House (225 - 200)
Nov. 5, 2009 National HR 3548 Extending Federal Emergency Unemployment Benefits and Providing Business and Homebuyer Tax Credits Concurrence Vote Passed - House (403 - 12)
Oct. 29, 2009 National HR 2996 Continuing Appropriations Extension and 2009-2010 Department of Interior, Environmental Protection Agency, and Related Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - House (247 - 178)
Oct. 29, 2009 National HR 2996 Continuing Appropriations Extension and 2009-2010 Department of Interior, Environmental Protection Agency, and Related Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - Senate (72 - 28)
Oct. 27, 2009 National HR 3548 Extending Federal Emergency Unemployment Benefits Cloture Invoked - Senate (87 - 13)
Oct. 8, 2009 National HR 2997 Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agency Appropriations Fiscal Year 2009-2010 Conference Report Adopted - Senate (76 - 22)
Oct. 7, 2009 National HR 2997 Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agency Appropriations Fiscal Year 2009-2010 Conference Report Adopted - House (263 - 162)
Sept. 30, 2009 National HR 2918 Continuing Appropriations Resolution and 2009-2010 Legislative Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - Senate (62 - 38)
Sept. 25, 2009 National HR 2918 Continuing Appropriations Resolution and 2009-2010 Legislative Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - House (217 - 190)
Sept. 22, 2009 National HR 3548 Extending Federal Emergency Unemployment Benefits Bill Passed - House (331 - 83)
Aug. 6, 2009 National HR 3435 Supplemental Appropriations for the "Cash for Clunkers" Program Bill Passed - Senate (60 - 37)
July 31, 2009 National HR 3435 Supplemental Appropriations for the "Cash for Clunkers" Program Bill Passed - House (316 - 109)
July 21, 2009 National S Amdt 1469 Repealing Funding for F-22 Aircraft Procurement Amendment Adopted - Senate (58 - 40)
June 16, 2009 National HR 2346 2008-2009 Supplemental Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - House (226 - 202)
April 29, 2009 National S Con Res 13 2010 Concurrent Budget Resolution Conference Report Adopted - House (233 - 193)
April 29, 2009 National S Con Res 13 2010 Concurrent Budget Resolution Conference Report Adopted - Senate (53 - 43)
March 31, 2009 National S Amdt 739 Public Debt Amendment Amendment Rejected - Senate (43 - 54)
March 19, 2009 National HR 1586 TARP Recipient Bonuses Tax Bill Passed - House (328 - 93)
March 19, 2009 National HR 1586 TARP Recipient Bonuses Tax Bill Passed - House (328 - 93)
Feb. 26, 2009 National HR 1105 2009 Budget Bill Bill Passed - House (245 - 178)
Feb. 13, 2009 National HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Conference Report Adopted - House (246 - 183)
Feb. 13, 2009 National HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Conference Report Adopted - House (246 - 183)
Feb. 13, 2009 National HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Conference Report Adopted - Senate (60 - 38)
Feb. 13, 2009 National HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Conference Report Adopted - Senate (60 - 38)
Feb. 10, 2009 National HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Bill Passed - Senate (61 - 37)
Feb. 10, 2009 National HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Bill Passed - Senate (61 - 37)
Feb. 6, 2009 National S Amdt 538 Tax Credit Substitute Amendment Motion Rejected - Senate (35 - 61)
Feb. 3, 2009 National S Amdt 109 Hollywood Productions Tax Credit Amendment Adopted - Senate (52 - 45)
Jan. 28, 2009 National HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Bill Passed - House (244 - 188)
Jan. 28, 2009 National HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Bill Passed - House (244 - 188)
Jan. 26, 2009 National PN 64-6 Timothy Geithner, Secretary of the Treasury Nomination Confirmed - Senate (60 - 34)
Jan. 26, 2009 National PN 64-6 Timothy Geithner, Secretary of the Treasury Nomination Confirmed - Senate (60 - 34)
Jan. 22, 2009 National H J Res 3 Releasing Funds for Economic Stabilization Act Joint Resolution Passed - House (270 - 155)
Jan. 15, 2009 National S J Res 5 Releasing Funds for Economic Stabilization Act Joint Resolution Failed - Senate (42 - 52)
Date No. Title Outcome
12/24 HR 3590 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Bill Passed - Senate (60 - 39)
12/24 HR 4314 Increasing the National Public Debt Limit Bill Passed - Senate (60 - 39)
12/23 HR 3590 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Cloture Invoked - Senate (60 - 39)
12/16 HR 2847 Employment, Infrastructure, and Transportation Appropriations Concurrence Vote Passed - House (217 - 212)
12/16 HR 4314 Increasing the National Public Debt Limit Bill Passed - House (218 - 214)
12/13 HR 3288 2009-2010 Omnibus Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - Senate (57 - 35)
12/10 HR 3288 2009-2010 Omnibus Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - House (221 - 202)
12/03 HR 4154 Estate Tax Law Amendments and Reinstatement of PAYGO Bill Passed - House (225 - 200)
11/05 HR 3548 Extending Federal Emergency Unemployment Benefits and Providing Business and Homebuyer Tax Credits Concurrence Vote Passed - House (403 - 12)
10/29 HR 2996 Continuing Appropriations Extension and 2009-2010 Department of Interior, Environmental Protection Agency, and Related Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - House (247 - 178)
10/29 HR 2996 Continuing Appropriations Extension and 2009-2010 Department of Interior, Environmental Protection Agency, and Related Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - Senate (72 - 28)
10/27 HR 3548 Extending Federal Emergency Unemployment Benefits Cloture Invoked - Senate (87 - 13)
10/08 HR 2997 Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agency Appropriations Fiscal Year 2009-2010 Conference Report Adopted - Senate (76 - 22)
10/07 HR 2997 Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agency Appropriations Fiscal Year 2009-2010 Conference Report Adopted - House (263 - 162)
9/30 HR 2918 Continuing Appropriations Resolution and 2009-2010 Legislative Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - Senate (62 - 38)
9/25 HR 2918 Continuing Appropriations Resolution and 2009-2010 Legislative Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - House (217 - 190)
9/22 HR 3548 Extending Federal Emergency Unemployment Benefits Bill Passed - House (331 - 83)
8/06 HR 3435 Supplemental Appropriations for the "Cash for Clunkers" Program Bill Passed - Senate (60 - 37)
7/31 HR 3435 Supplemental Appropriations for the "Cash for Clunkers" Program Bill Passed - House (316 - 109)
7/21 S Amdt 1469 Repealing Funding for F-22 Aircraft Procurement Amendment Adopted - Senate (58 - 40)
6/16 HR 2346 2008-2009 Supplemental Appropriations Conference Report Adopted - House (226 - 202)
4/29 S Con Res 13 2010 Concurrent Budget Resolution Conference Report Adopted - House (233 - 193)
4/29 S Con Res 13 2010 Concurrent Budget Resolution Conference Report Adopted - Senate (53 - 43)
3/31 S Amdt 739 Public Debt Amendment Amendment Rejected - Senate (43 - 54)
3/19 HR 1586 TARP Recipient Bonuses Tax Bill Passed - House (328 - 93)
3/19 HR 1586 TARP Recipient Bonuses Tax Bill Passed - House (328 - 93)
2/26 HR 1105 2009 Budget Bill Bill Passed - House (245 - 178)
2/13 HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Conference Report Adopted - House (246 - 183)
2/13 HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Conference Report Adopted - House (246 - 183)
2/13 HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Conference Report Adopted - Senate (60 - 38)
2/13 HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Conference Report Adopted - Senate (60 - 38)
2/10 HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Bill Passed - Senate (61 - 37)
2/10 HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Bill Passed - Senate (61 - 37)
2/06 S Amdt 538 Tax Credit Substitute Amendment Motion Rejected - Senate (35 - 61)
2/03 S Amdt 109 Hollywood Productions Tax Credit Amendment Adopted - Senate (52 - 45)
1/28 HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Bill Passed - House (244 - 188)
1/28 HR 1 Appropriations, Tax Law Amendments, and Unemployment Benefit Amendments ("Stimulus Bill") Bill Passed - House (244 - 188)
1/26 PN 64-6 Timothy Geithner, Secretary of the Treasury Nomination Confirmed - Senate (60 - 34)
1/26 PN 64-6 Timothy Geithner, Secretary of the Treasury Nomination Confirmed - Senate (60 - 34)
1/22 H J Res 3 Releasing Funds for Economic Stabilization Act Joint Resolution Passed - House (270 - 155)
1/15 S J Res 5 Releasing Funds for Economic Stabilization Act Joint Resolution Failed - Senate (42 - 52)

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