JAMES Magazine Online: Georgetown Study Ranks Warnock High for Bipartisanship

Baker Owens

Friday, May 17th, 2024

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Every year, Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy and its Lugar Center rank the members of Congress for bipartisanship. Based on two rather simple metrics, bipartisan sponsorships and bi-partisan co-sponsorships, the rankings do not take particular legislation into account, rather just whether any certain legislation attracted support from the opposing party. Readers and other politics devotees can debate the value of bipartisanship but the Lugar Center’s rankings are an interesting metric.  

Close watchers of the U.S. Senate may not be surprised by many of the names at the top of the list – Sen. Susan Collins , R-ME, comes out on top, but Georgians can take note that Sen. Raphael Warnock was placed 14th on the list.

“Georgians sent me to the Senate to get things done, so I’m pleased to receive this recognition for my tireless efforts to deliver for Georgians,” said Warnock.

Warnock is somewhat bucking the trend of recent elected leaders – something Georgia may continue to see if it retains its status as something of a “purple” state. In Warnock’s case, he knows there is a delicate balance in a state with two viable parties – at least statewide (Georgia’s other senator, Democrat Jon Ossoff ranked 33). Senators from similarly situated states also ranked high, such as Gary Peters from Michigan and Maggie Hassan from New Hampshire, second and third respectively.

“Bipartisan cooperation on legislation in 2023 was deficient by historical standards, though there were some marginal improvements in scores from the previous Congress,” said Lugar Center Policy Director Dan Diller. “It is especially disheartening that all eight new Senators who took office in January 2023 ranked in the bottom 30 percent of Senate scores.”

She has not been there long but the lowest ranked senator was Katie Britt from Alabama, noted for her response to the State of the Union earlier this year. Her fellow Alabama senator Tommy Tuberville was ranked 93rd. Interestingly, Missouri also had two senators in the bottom ten, Josh Hawley at 90th and Eric Schmitt ranked second from last at 97th (Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-NY, and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-KY, were excluded from the study).

“As the Senior Pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church, I spent decades working with Georgians from all walks of life to make progress for our state. As a voice for Georgia in the Senate, I’ve applied that same mentality of working with anyone to do what’s best for Georgians,” said Warnock. “I’ve long admired Senator Lugar, whose legacy still looms large in the Senate, and I applaud the Lugar Center’s critical work of fostering bipartisan dialogue. Georgians sent me to the Senate to get things done, so I’m pleased to receive this recognition for my tireless efforts to deliver for Georgians.” 

To see the full study: https://www.thelugarcenter.org/ourwork-Bipartisan-Index.html