Sen. Orrin Hatch tops list of senators who've passed the most laws

Published: Friday, May 16 2014 3:57 p.m. MDT

In this July 30, 2013 file photo, Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, left, accompanied by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky. speaks with reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington. Hatch has gotten more laws passed than anyone else currently serving in the Senate, according to a ranking released Friday by the National Journal.

J. Scott Applewhite, Associated Press

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SALT LAKE CITY — Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, has gotten more laws passed than anyone else currently serving in the Senate, according to a ranking released Friday by the National Journal.

Hatch has sponsored or co-sponsored 742 bills that have become law during his 37 years in the Senate, according to the publication's rankings. First elected in 1976, Hatch is the second-longest serving member of the Senate.

"I'm proud of the many good things we’ve been able to accomplish together over the years I’ve been in office,” Hatch said in a statement, calling representing Utah "a weighty responsibility to advance the public good" and an honor and a privilege.

Only Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., first elected in 1974, has more seniority in the Senate than Hatch, but with 499 laws passed, Leahy was ninth on the list of the numbers of laws passed per senator as of May 13.

Right behind Hatch on the list was Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Miss., with 675 laws passed. Cochran joined the Senate in December 1978 and is the third-most senior member of the Senate.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., was in seventh place on the list, with 507 laws passed. Longtime House member Sen. Edward Markey, D-Mass., who joined the Senate last year, had 506.

The National Journal cited both Hatch's longevity and his prestigious committee assignments as factors in his topping the list. Hatch's committee assignments have included chairing the powerful Senate Judiciary Committee.

— Lisa Riley Roche

Email: lisa@deseretnews.com

Twitter: DNewsPolitics

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