Carrie Brooks


March 20, 2018


Last year, Congress accomplished a lot to advance pro-growth, pro-business policies. From tax reform to improving the regulatory climate, they deserve to be recognized.

The U.S. Chamber today hosted its annual Spirit of Enterprise Award ceremony, recognizing the members of Congress who held the strongest records of support for the business community in the first session of the 115th Congress.

This select group of 297 comprised 249 members of the House and 48 members of the Senate.

This marks the 30th year that the Chamber has administered the Spirit of Enterprise Awards.

Just how are awardees determined? What did the Chamber prioritize during this session of Congress? And what do members of Congress have to say about receiving the honor?

Read on to find out.

How is it determined?

The Chamber’s How They Voted scorecard–published today–reveals how every senator and representative voted on a number of key Chamber issues. Those members earning a cumulative score of 70% or higher earn the Spirit of Enterprise Award. 

The virtual scorecard can be organized by member name, chamber of Congress, state and party affiliation.


What votes count?

The scorecards for the first session of the 115th Congress were determined by seven Senate and 14 House votes.

These Chamber-designated “key votes” are recorded floor votes on issues the Chamber's board of directors prioritizes. The Chamber communicates its positions to members prior to voting.

In the House, votes considered included the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, Save Local Business Act, Protecting Seniors Access to Medicare Act, Disapproving the Blacklisting Rule, and Lawsuit Abuse Reduction Act, among others.

Senators, meanwhile, were graded on the confirmation of U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch, the National Defense Authorization Act, Disapproving rules relating to Arbitration Agreements and State plans under the ESEA, and the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.


What are they saying?

Many of the 249 award winners attended the Spirit of Enterprise Award ceremony at the Chamber’s Capitol Hill office this morning.

“It’s a good time to be doing business in America, thanks to a slate of legislative accomplishments that laid the groundwork for more economic growth and job creation, said U.S. Chamber President and CEO Tom Donohue.“The efforts of these elected leaders to advance commonsense, growth-oriented legislation will help Main Street American businesses thrive. We commend these members of Congress for their commitment to promoting and protecting American free enterprise and economic prosperity.”

The Chamber is proud to honor its 297 Spirit of Enterprise Award winners and looks forward to their support for sessions to come.

You can view the entire How They Voted scorecard here.

Many recipients announced their awards to constituents.

About the authors

Carrie Brooks