Kamala Harris photo

What They're Saying About Vice President Harris Setting a New Record for Tie-Breaking Senate Votes, Providing "the Decisive Vote on Some of the Most Transformative Bills in Modern History"

December 07, 2023

WASHINGTON – Vice President Kamala Harris set a new record on Tuesday for the most tie-breaking Senate votes cast by a Vice President in American history. The previous record of 31 tie-breaking votes stood for nearly 200 years after John C. Calhoun reached that mark in 1832.

The Vice President's tie-breaking votes have been consequential in delivering for families across the country and moving the Biden-Harris agenda forward. They have helped lower the cost of prescription drugs, make a historic investment in addressing the climate crisis, create good-paying jobs, support small businesses, tackle the pandemic, and ensure the federal government and judiciary represents the diversity of the nation.

Here's what they are saying about this history-making moment:

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer
HISTORY MADE: With 32 tie-breaking votes, VP Kamala Harris has just broken the record for most tie-breaking votes cast in the Senate by a Vice President ever! VP Harris has provided the decisive vote on some of the most transformative bills in modern history. Thank you, VP! […]

The record VP Harris sets today is important because of what she's made possible: Without her tie-breaking votes, there would be no American Rescue Plan, no Inflation Reduction Act, and we would not have confirmed many of the excellent federal judges now presiding on the bench.

Assistant Democratic Leader Rep. James E. Clyburn
The record was previously held by John C. Calhoun, one of the biggest proponents of slavery. It's only fitting that VP Harris, the first woman, the first Black American, and the first South Asian American VP, has set a new standard and brought us into the 21st century.

President Pro Tempore of the Senate Patty Murray
VP Harris has cast more tie-breaking votes than any other Vice President—on everything from confirming qualified & diverse federal judges to passing historic legislation to building a clean energy economy & providing relief to working families. Her vote has made the difference.

Senator Debbie Stabenow
VP Harris just made history! She issued her 32nd tie-breaking vote on the Senate floor setting the record for the most ever by a U.S. Vice President. VP Harris - thank you for all your work!

Senator Mazie Hirono
Once again, VP Harris has made history today—casting more tie-breaking votes than any other VP in our nation's history. With her help, Senate Dems have confirmed a historically diverse slate of federal judges and passed legislation to strengthen our country and our communities.

Senator Brian Schatz
Big milestone! VP Harris just issued a historic tiebreaking vote on the Senate floor—it's her 32nd tiebreaker, setting the record for the most ever by a U.S. Vice President. VP Harris, congratulations on making history and thank you for all your hard work!

The Associated Press
Harris has helped advance the American Rescue Plan, which was a $1.9 trillion pandemic relief measure, and the Inflation Reduction Act, which limited the costs of prescription drugs and created financial incentives for clean energy.

The 19th
Vice President Kamala Harris on Tuesday cast a record-setting 32nd tie-breaker vote in the Senate, voting to approve the confirmation of Loren L. AliKhan to the federal bench. Harris, the first Black and Asian-American woman to hold the office, tied in July the record that had been set in 1832 by then-Vice President John C. Calhoun, an ardent defender of slavery and White Southerners. […]

Harris has cast tie-breaking votes on the Inflation Reduction Act, which included measures to combat climate change and lower prescription drug costs, and the American Rescue Plan, a pandemic relief package.

New York Times
It was the latest bit of history to be made by Ms. Harris, a former senator from California and the first woman, African American and Asian American to serve as vice president. She cast her 32nd tiebreaking vote on Tuesday, beating the previous record of 31 set nearly 200 years ago by John C. Calhoun, who was vice president from 1825 to 1832.

San Francisco Chronicle
Harris helped advance or approve the nominations of a number of appointees, including 9th Circuit Court Judge Jennifer Sung, Northern District of California Judge Araceli Martinez-Olguin and National Labor Relations Board General Counsel Jennifer Abruzzo. Harris also cast the tiebreaking votes to advance or pass two major Biden administration priorities; a major environmental and health care law and a $1.9 trillion economic stimulus package.

PBS NewsHour
Harris is always already historic, the first female vice president, the first Asian American, and the first African American. And she has now taken the record for the most ties from John C. Calhoun, perhaps the most influential white supremacist in U.S. history. He argued slavery was good for Black people.

The Post and Courier
There is always a South Carolina connection. Today, Vice President Kamala Harris made history when she cast her 32nd tie-breaking vote in the U.S. Senate. The last record-holder? SC's own John C. Calhoun, who as vice president, cast 31 tie-breaking votes by 1832.

South Carolina Now
Vice President Kamala Harris broke a nearly 200-year-old record for casting the most tiebreaking votes in the Senate when she voted Tuesday to advance the confirmation of a new federal judge in Washington, D.C. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat, called Harris' 32nd tiebreaking vote a "great milestone." […]

The previous recordholder was John C. Calhoun, who cast 31 tiebreaking votes during his eight years as vice president, from 1825 to 1832. Harris, a Democrat, tied Calhoun's record in July.

Lawrence O'Donnell on MSNBC's The Last Word
Today, the most history-making Vice President in history made history once again.

The Rachel Maddow Blog
Why Vice President Harris' record on tie-breaking votes matters: Kamala Harris has now cast more tie-breaking votes than any vice president in American history — and she did it in less than three years in office.

CNN Politics
Vice President Kamala Harris made history Tuesday by casting her 32nd tie-breaking vote, setting a new record for number of votes cast by a vice president.

Los Angeles Times
Harris' ability to break ties has been important for her party's legislative agenda. She cast deciding votes to advance the $1.9-trillion stimulus bill known as the American Rescue Plan in 2021 and the $700 billion Inflation Reduction Act, Biden's signature climate bill.

Kamala Harris, What They're Saying About Vice President Harris Setting a New Record for Tie-Breaking Senate Votes, Providing "the Decisive Vote on Some of the Most Transformative Bills in Modern History" Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/368381

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