How are we represented? An understanding of Illinois’ Congressional delegates and their voting records

By George Wiebe, Staff Reporter

The United States House of Representatives is made up of 435 members across the country, 18 come from the State of Illinois and these officials speak for their districts and represent the average person in the federal government.

Both Senators from Illinois are Democrats and five Republicans join thirteen Democrats in the House.

Every two years citizens get to decide the people representing them in the federal government, and knowing what they do is vital towards deciding who returns to office and who goes home.

Advertisement

Since Congress reconvened at the start of 2021 major legislation has passed through the House, though their chances in the Senate are not assured.

Some of the Bills passed cover a wide range of important topics like COVID-19 relief, civil rights, police reform, gun control and wildlife protection.

The average person will catch a few of these Bills in the news, but understanding the major and minor decisions made by our representatives is the only way to keep them honest and accountable to the people who voted for them.

In order of when they were introduced to the House, here is a list of major legislation passed, and how Illinoisans were represented:

H.R.1 – For the People Act of 2021

H.R.1 is a bill that would expand voter access in all 50 states, as well as establish independent redistricting commissions for the sake of drawing up congressional districts and reform campaign financing by further limiting contributions from foreign nationals. 

 (The numbers represent districts)

Advertisement

  1. Bobby Rush (D)- Yea
  2. Robin Kelly (D)- Yea
  3. Marie Newman (D)- Yea
  4. Jesus Garcia (D)- Yea
  5. Mike Quigley (D)- Yea
  6. Sean Casten (D)- Yea
  7. Danny Davis (D)- Yea
  8. Jaja Krishnamoorthi (D)-Yea
  9. Jan Schakowsky (D)- Yea
  10. Brad Schnieder (D)- Yea
  11. Bill Foster (D)- Yea
  12. Mike Bost (R)- Nay
  13. Rodney Davis (R)- Nay
  14. Lauren Underwood (D)- Yea
  15. Mary Miller (R)- No Vote
  16. Adam Kinzinger (R)- Nay
  17. Cheri Bustos (D)- Yea
  18. Darin LaHood (R)- Nay

 

“The For the People Act ends many discriminatory practices like voter intimidation and distribution of misinformation, used to prevent Latino, Black and other marginalized communities from exercising their voting rights,” Democratic Rep. Jesus Garcia (IL-4) said.

H.R.1276 – VA VACCINE Act of 2021

Passed unanimously by the house the H.R. 1276 would cover the cost of COVID-19 vaccines for the Department of Veterans Affairs.

 (The numbers represent districts)

  1. Bobby Rush- Yea
  2. Robin Kelly- Yea
  3. Marie Newman- Yea
  4. Jesus Garcia- Yea
  5. Mike Quigley- Yea
  6. Sean Casten- Yea
  7. Danny Davis- Yea
  8. Jaja Krishnamoorthi- Yea
  9. Jan Schakowsky- Yea
  10. Brad Schnieder- Yea
  11. Bill Foster- Yea
  12. Mike Bost- Yea
  13. Rodney Davis- Yea
  14. Lauren Underwood- Yea
  15. Mary Miller- Yea
  16. Adam Kinzinger- Yea
  17. Cheri Bustos- Yea
  18. Darin LaHood- Yea

H.R.803 – Protecting America’s Wilderness and Public Lands Act

Wildlife conservation has not been a major talking point, especially since the start of the pandemic, but H.R 803, which would designate a significant amount of Colorado wilderness as part of the National Wilderness Preservation System. 

 (The numbers represent districts)

  1. Bobby Rush- Yea
  2. Robin Kelly- Yea
  3. Marie Newman- Yea
  4. Jesus Garcia- Yea
  5. Mike Quigley- Yea
  6. Sean Casten- Yea
  7. Danny Davis- Yea
  8. Jaja Krishnamoorthi- Yea
  9. Jan Schakowsky- Yea
  10. Brad Schnieder- Yea
  11. Bill Foster- Yea
  12. Mike Bost- No Vote
  13. Rodney Davis- Nay
  14. Lauren Underwood- Yea
  15. Mary Miller- Nay
  16. Adam Kinzinger- No Vote
  17. Cheri Bustos- Yea
  18. Darin LaHood- Nay

H.R.5 – Equality Act

Previously voted down in the Senate back in 2019 H.R.5 would amend the Civil Rights Amendment to prohibit discrimintaion based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

 (The numbers represent districts)

  1. Bobby Rush- Yea
  2. Robin Kelly- Yea
  3. Marie Newman- Yea
  4. Jesus Garcia- Yea
  5. Mike Quigley- Yea
  6. Sean Casten- Yea
  7. Danny Davis- Yea
  8. Jaja Krishnamoorthi- Yea
  9. Jan Schakowsky- Yea
  10. Brad Schnieder- Yea
  11. Bill Foster- Yea
  12. Mike Bost- Nay
  13. Rodney Davis- Nay
  14. Lauren Underwood-Yea
  15. Mary Miller- Nay
  16. Adam Kinzinger- Nay
  17. Cheri Bustos- Yea
  18. Darin LaHood- Nay

“No one should be denied housing, education, and public services in this country just because of who they are and who they love,” Democratic Rep. Marie Newman (IL-3) said, “Americans like my daughter deserve every right to be legally protected from discrimination, and with the passage of this legislation, we are one step closer to that reality.”

H.R.1280 – George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2021

Following the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor at the hands of police in 2020 massive civil unrest led to the creation of a nationwide police reform bill; the objective of H.R.1280 is to increase transparency in departments and improve training policies.  

 (The numbers represent districts)

  1. Bobby Rush- Yea
  2. Robin Kelly- Yea
  3. Marie Newman- Yea
  4. Jesus Garcia- Yea
  5. Mike Quigley- Yea
  6. Sean Casten- Yea
  7. Danny Davis- Yea
  8. Jaja Krishnamoorthi- Yea
  9. Jan Schakowsky- Yea
  10. Brad Schnieder- Yea
  11. Bill Foster- Yea
  12. Mike Bost- Nay
  13. Rodney Davis- Nay
  14. Lauren Underwood- Yea
  15. Mary Miller- Nay
  16. Adam Kinzinger- Nay
  17. Cheri Bustos- Yea
  18. Darin LaHood- Nay

“There is no doubt that law enforcement officers who violate their oath to protect and serve should be held accountable for their actions,” Republican Rep. Mike Bost (IL-12) said, “but defunding the police and removing protections for good officers is a recipe for lawlessness.”

H.R.1319 – American Rescue Plan Act of 2021

The $1.9 trillion stimulus bill is one of the largest, widest reaching public expenditures aimed at relieving American people and businesses that have been most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

 (The numbers represent districts)

  1. Bobby Rush- Yea
  2. Robin Kelly- Yea
  3. Marie Newman- Yea 
  4. Jesus Garcia- Yea
  5. Mike Quigley- Yea
  6. Sean Casten- Yea
  7. Danny Davis- Yea
  8. Jaja Krishnamoorthi- Yea
  9. Jan Schakowsky- Yea
  10. Brad Schnieder- Yea
  11. Bill Foster- Yea
  12. Mike Bost- No Vote
  13. Rodney Davis- Nay
  14. Lauren Underwood- Yea
  15. Mary Miller- Nay
  16. Adam Kinzinger- Nay
  17. Cheri Bustos- Yea
  18. Darin LaHood- Nay

“Congress has a responsibility to deliver a robust and equitable recovery, and I will work diligently to ensure that is the case,” Democratic Rep. Bobby Rush (IL-1), Illinois’ longest serving Representative, said.

H.R.8 – Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2021

Anxiety over gun violence in America has made room for H.R.8 to pass the House of Representatives, expanding background check requirements for the transfer of firearms between private parties.

 (The numbers represent districts)

  1. Bobby Rush- Yea
  2. Robin Kelly- Yea
  3. Marie Newman- Yea
  4. Jesus Garcia- Yea
  5. Mike Quigley- Yea
  6. Sean Casten- Yea
  7. Danny Davis- Yea
  8. Jaja Krishnamoorthi- Yea
  9. Jan Schakowsky- Yea
  10. Brad Schnieder- Yea
  11. Bill Foster- Yea
  12. Mike Bost- Nay
  13. Rodney Davis- Nay
  14. Lauren Underwood- Yea
  15. Mary Miller- Nay
  16. Adam Kinzinger- Yea
  17. Cheri Bustos- Yea
  18. Darin LaHood- Nay

“I firmly believe in the right to keep and bear arms, legally,” Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger (IL-16)  said. “I’m also a strong advocate for concealed carry, and have permitted myself to do so. But we have a violence problem in this country and it cannot be ignored.”

Staff reporter George Wiebe can be reached at [email protected]

To stay up to date with all your southern Illinois news, follow the Daily Egyptian on Facebook and Twitter.

Advertisement