What They’re Saying About the Blue Dog Coalition’s 25th Anniversary

Feb 14, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON—Today marks the beginning of the Blue Dog Coalition’s 25th year fighting for fiscal responsibility, a strong national defense, and bipartisan, commonsense solutions in Congress. As part of the celebration, the Coalition released a set of resources documenting its history. The resources are the following: 1) an introduction to the Blue Dog Coalition’s 25th Anniversary, 2) the story of the Blue Dog Coalition’s founding class, 3) an outline of the Coalition’s policy successes, and 4) the full list of the Blue Dog Coalition’s rosters from 1995 to today.


Leaders who have played crucial roles in the organization’s history, ranging from former Blue Dog members to congressional leaders to policy experts, have been raving about the Blue Dog Coalition’s 25 years of service to this country.


Here’s what they are saying:


“For twenty-five years, the Blue Dog Coalition has been an essential part of the Democratic Caucus. From promoting fiscal responsibility to championing our party as a big tent, Blue Dogs continue to make it possible for Democrats to rally Americans behind our party’s core principles and compete for votes in every corner of the country. I have been honored to work closely with Blue Dogs throughout their history to advance our Democratic agenda, and I look forward to continuing to do so for a long time to come.” — Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, U.S. House of Representatives


"For 25 years, the Blue Dogs have led the way in Congress getting things done for everyday families by building bipartisan coalitions of support around commonsense legislative solutions. The Blue Dogs' proven track record of bipartisan accomplishments is why Democrats were able to win across the country in 2018 and take back the majority in the U.S. House. I know for the next 25 years, the Blue Dogs will continue to set the example of what it means to put country over party and deliver for the American people."— Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Member of the Blue Dog Coalition (2013-2019)


“Democratic and Republican majorities have come and gone, but one thing has remained constant—the Blue Dogs’ commitment to putting partisan politics aside for the good of the country. These members represent the very best of the United States Congress. As a founding member of this organization that has brought members together for so long and for so many years, I know we need their voices now more than ever.”— Former Rep. Bud Cramer (AL-05), Chairman of Center Forward, and Founding Member of the Blue Dog Coalition (1995-2009)


“Some of us realized that there was a critical need for a coalition of Members to form around the principles of financial responsibility and social tolerance, and so the Blue Dogs were formed with that principle in mind. Interestingly, 25 years later it is still not only relevant, but also desperately needed in today’s political environment.”— Former Rep. John Tanner (TN-08), Founding Member of the Blue Dog Coalition (1995-2011) 


“As one of the founders of the Blue Dogs back in 1995, I am immensely proud of our history as a group of independent, common-sense leaders. Blue Dogs believed then and now that seeking consensus delivers results. We saw the Blue Dog Coalition regain its footing in 2018, becoming more diverse both regionally and culturally, but most importantly helping Democrats win back the House. Going forward, I hope we can build on this mentality and recognize that Democrats are not ‘one-size-fits-all,’ and we are a stronger party because of our different perspectives.” — Former Sen. Blanche L. Lincoln (D-AR), Founding Member of the Blue Dog Coalition (1995-1997)


“The Blue Dog Coalition has been committed for a quarter of a century to bridging the partisan divide that cripples Congress. It was an honor for me to work for 12 years alongside other fiscally-responsible Democrats from across the country to find commonsense solutions to our nation’s challenges. Members of the Blue Dog Coalition, past and present, are one big family that share a core set of values, beliefs and principles that are needed now more than ever before.” — Former Rep. Mike Ross (AR-04), Member of the Blue Dog Coalition (2001-2013)


“Debt and deficit are huge drivers of American national security. Sadly, Congress as a whole has lost its political will. Tackling hard problems like this is why I became a Blue Dog and why the Coalition needs to continue to exist.” — Former Rep. Jane Harman (CA-36), Member of the Blue Dog Coalition (2001-2011)


“As they say, if you want a friend in Washington, get a dog. And in our case, a Blue Dog. Congratulations to the Blue Dog Coalition for 25 years of bringing reason, civility and modern ideas to the Democratic Caucus. There is no Democratic majority without the Blue Dogs and whenever something gets done in Washington, the Blue Dogs are all over it. Here’s to another 25 years and proud to have so many good friends in Washington.” — Jim Kessler, Executive Vice President for Policy, Third Way


"The House Blue Dog Coalition, more diverse than ever, has emerged as a creative and coherent new force in Congress. The Blue Dogs are developing and advocating for the kind of radically pragmatic ideas that can help Americans solve their problems and push back against political polarization and extremism." — Will Marshall, President, Progressive Policy Institute (PPI)


“Congratulations to the Blue Dog Coalition on their 25th Anniversary. We deeply appreciate their current members and those from years past for pressing for responsible fiscal policy. The Blue Dogs’ willingness to work in a bipartisan fashion and put their constituents and their principles above party is more vital than ever, with rising polarization crippling our ability to address significant problems. The Coalition was instrumental in reviving PAYGO rules and has consistently been an influential voice on important fiscal issues since its founding. We look forward to many more years of working with the Blue Dog Coalition. Happy 25th!”— Maya MacGuineas, President, Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB)