6 Things Hillary Accomplished As Senator

by Becca Stanek

So, what exactly did Hillary Clinton do as senator of New York? The question of what her concrete accomplishments are — bills that were signed into law, policies that were changed, etc. — has been raised by even some of Clinton's biggest supporters. Clinton has been in the political sphere since she became First Lady of Arkansas in 1979, and though her list of concrete achievements might not include a ton of passed legislation, what she worked on was incredibly important.

Clinton introduced an impressive number of bills during her tenure as senator from 2001 to 2009. She sponsored a hefty 711 bills, which as Daily Kos points out, is a good show of her leadership and influence. However, out of the 711 bills that Clinton sponsored, only four passed both chambers, and only three ended up becoming law, according to Admittedly, no one has a great ratio though, as bills are incredibly difficult to pass. After all, Washington doesn’t exactly have a reputation for getting a lot done.

But, Clinton was persistent, and she still is. By 2016, she will have been in the public eye for a total of 24 years. The only other president to touch that record was Richard Nixon, who was in the public eye 20 years before being elected, according to Mother Jones. Even if Clinton doesn’t have a long list of passed legislation to her name, her longevity and ability to remain in good standing with the public is worthy of some credit.

However, even though Clinton supporters might feel stumped at the question of what she has accomplished exactly, that’s not because the answer is nothing. Clinton does have a list of important achievements from her time as senator, and here it is.

She made a big mark on the World Trade Center site’s redevelopment

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According to U.S. News and World Report, Clinton was key in getting the $21 billion funding necessary for the redevelopment and reconstruction of the World Trade Center buildings and site. Also, in the vein of 9/11 efforts, Clinton also took on a big role in the investigation of health issues faced by 9/11 responders.

She introduced the Family Entertainment Protection Act

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This bill, which Clinton introduced in 2005, prohibited games rated "Mature" or "Adult-Only" from being sold to minors, and imposed fines or community services hours upon sellers if they sold such a game to a minor.

She worked to ensure the safety of children’s drugs

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Clinton co-authored a 2003 law that urged drug companies to conduct pediatric safety tests for medications that are prescribed to children. To ensure that drug companies to have ample time to test drugs on not just adults but also on children, it offers a six-month extension to companies that agree to test their drugs for use on children as well as adults.

She ensured funding was in place for schools to retain and recruit high-quality teachers and principals

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Clinton wrote a section of the “No Child Left Behind Law” that countered the projected shortage of 2.2 million teachers by 2011 with the authorization of funding for schools to recruit and retain teachers and principals.

She wrote a law to ensure family caregivers could have temporary relief from their caregiving obligations

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In 2006, Clinton wrote a law that provided grants to both state and local governments to fund respite care services for family caregivers.

She is the first FLOTUS to ever be elected to office


Clinton made a mark on history just by being elected — and this would also be the case should she snag the presidency in 2016. Before Clinton, no first lady had ever been elected to a public office.

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