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A strong democracy depends on effective, responsible leaders

The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation awarded a $1.5 million grant to the Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL) to support its work in measuring the effectiveness of state lawmakers. A partnership between the University of Virginia and Vanderbilt University since 2017, CEL shares knowledge about the effectiveness of individual lawmakers and U.S. legislative institutions. Currently, CEL issues scorecards to federal lawmakers. This grant will allow them to expand their work to measure the effectiveness of state lawmakers.

CEL has been generating State Legislative Effectiveness Scores for nearly every federal legislator over the past few decades and has drawn on these scores to analyze the causes and consequences of effective lawmaking in American state legislatures. The foundation’s grant will aid in identifying the conditions under which state legislators will likely be successful at advancing their policy agendas and the institutional reforms that promote effective lawmaking.

“The results of the scorecards will benefit the public who deserve to know how well their elected officials collaborate and legislate,” says Wendy Feliz, managing director of Democracy of the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation. ”

Under this grant, CEL will generate individual state lawmaker scores shortly after each state legislative term is completed, beginning with Georgia and Montana and eventually nationwide.

This grant aligns with the foundation’s Democracy strategy to increase effective, constructive, responsible leadership in Georgia and Montana.

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