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Connolly Named Most Effective Lawmaker of the 117th Congress

Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-VA) was named the Most Effective Lawmaker of the 117th Congress by the Center for Effective Lawmaking. With a Legislative Effectiveness Score of 7.142, Connolly scored more than seven times higher than the average member of the House.


The Center for Effective Lawmaking, a partnership between the University of Virginia and Vanderbilt University, releases Legislative Effectiveness Scores for each Congress. According to the Center, “the scores are based on the combination of fifteen metrics regarding the bills that each member of Congress sponsors, how far they move through the lawmaking process, and how substantial their policy proposals are.” 


“I am incredibly proud and honored to be named the most effective lawmaker of the 117th Congress,” said Connolly. “My goal every day is to serve the people of Virginia’s 11th District with passion and purpose, and this is the result. I share this distinction with my entire team, whose work ethic and commitment to service is unmatched. Now, our work continues in the 118th Congress!” 


Connolly sponsored 51 pieces of legislation in the 117th Congress, 26 of which were considered in Committee or by the House, 11 of which passed the full House, and three of which were signed into law as standalone bills. Further, several of Connolly’s bills were substantively included in the FY 2023 National Defense Authorization Act, which President Biden signed into law in December 2022. Among the enacted legislation were bills to codify a whole-of-government coordinator for global health security, strengthen the cybersecurity of cloud products and services, extend retirement benefits to disabled first responders, better protect federal whistleblowers, and solidify the federal government’s financial commitment to Metro.


In announcing the Legislative Effectiveness Scores for the 117th Congress, the Center for Effective Lawmaking said the following:


Topping our list is Rep. Gerald Connolly of Virginia, with a Legislative Effectiveness Score more than seven times the average member of the House. Rep. Connolly was Chair of the Government Operations subcommittee of the House Oversight and Reform Committee in the 117th Congress, where he was serving his 7th term. He sponsored 51 bills, 11 of which passed the House, and 3 of which became law as standalone measures. In contrast, the average member of the House sponsored 21 bills, with only one law produced for every two House members. In addition to sponsoring the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023, Rep. Connolly was the sponsor of the First Responder Fair RETIRE Act, which allowed disabled first responders to collect federal retirement benefits in a manner equivalent to non-disabled federal first responders. Rep. Connolly was also the sponsor of two bills, the Enhanced Whistleblower Engagement Act, and the FedRAMP Authorization Act, that had their language substantially incorporated into the James M. Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2023, which was signed into law in December 2022.


While he used his position as committee chair to advance numerous pieces of legislation in the 117th Congress, Rep. Connolly has been an effective lawmaker throughout his career, even as a rank-and-file Representative, and when in the minority party. For example, he was in our “Exceeds Expectations” grouping in five of the seven Congresses in which he served, beginning with his third term in Congress, and every term thereafter (including the 117th Congress).”


For more information, and to read the complete announcement from the Center for Effective Lawmaking, click here.

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