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Sanders, Cruz Rank as Least Bipartisan Senators


Sanders was the least bipartisan senator in 2015. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Sanders was the least bipartisan senator in 2015. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Two of the least bipartisan senators in 2015 are running for president in 2016, a reflection of the polarized race playing out across the country.  

Presidential hopeful Sen.Bernard J. Sanders, I-Vt., placed last in bipartisanship, followed by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas,  according to the Bipartisan Index rankings released Monday for the first session of the 114th Congress.  

Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, came in first place for bipartisanship, followed by Sens. Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., and Mark S. Kirk, R-Ill, in the index released by the The Lugar Center, led by former Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., and Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy  

The rankings are based on how often members work across party lines, including bill sponsorship and co-sponsorship. A total of 38 senators received a positive score in bipartisanship for 2015, up from 36 in the 113th Congress. Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, is the last of the positive scores in 2015, and Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., starts the negative ratings.  

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., ranked No. 28 with a positive score and Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., ranked No. 51 with a negative score. In the lifetime scores of data complied between 1993 and 2014, President Barack Obama had a negative score as senator and placed 165 out of 227 for bipartisanship. Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton also had a negative score as senator and placed 156.  

This year’s rankings do not include Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., or Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev.  

In the House, Peter T. King, R-N.Y., was the most bipartisan member in 2015, followed by Reps. Chris Gibson, R-N.Y., and Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz. The least bipartisan member was Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-Md, with Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., coming in third-to-last.  

Speakers John A. Boehner and Paul D. Ryan were excluded from the index, as were Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and former Reps. Michael Grimm, R-N.Y., Aaron Schock, R-Ill., and the late Alan Nunnelee, R-Miss.  

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