shapiro ineffective

Governor Josh Shapiro “Ain’t Got Sh*t Done”


Governor Josh Shapiro has made “Get Sh*t Done,” profanity and all, the official slogan of his administration, but when it comes to legislative accomplishments, his governing abilities have yet to live up to that motto. A Commonwealth Foundation analysis found Shapiro’s first year-and-a-half in office was the least productive of any Pennsylvania gubernatorial term in at least 50 years, while also leaving him ranked last in the nation among states with divided government.

Shapiro came to office with a strong mandate and pledged to work together with Republicans in the state Capitol. However, in attempting to broker a bipartisan deal during the 2023 state budget negotiations, Shapiro proved unable to muster support from his own party in the legislature. This led to a protracted budget impasse, making Shapiro the last governor in the nation to sign a completed 2023-2024 state budget.

Shapiro Last In Nation Among States With Divided Government

While Gov. Shapiro defends his record saying Pennsylvania is the only state with a “full time, divided legislature,” seven other states have divided government (a governor and legislature of different parties).

  • Despite having a “full-time legislature” the 111 bills signed by Gov. Josh Shapiro, from the beginning of his term through the end of June 2024, represent the fewest of any governor with divided government.
  • In comparison, the other states with divided government have enacted on average 491 laws during the same period. Wisconsin is the only other state in the nation with divided government and a full-time legislature, but still managed to enact 268 laws, more than 2.5 times as many as Shapiro. 
  • Leading the pack, Gov. Glenn Youngkin of Virginia—with divided government and a part-time legislature—has enacted 1,654 bills since 2023. Gov. Youngkin has signed nearly 16 times more bills than Gov. Shapiro.

Shapiro Least Productive PA Gov. in at Least 50 Years

Commonwealth Foundation’s analysis compares the number of General Legislation Acts and Appropriations Acts enacted in the first year-and-a-half of each of Pennsylvania’s gubernatorial terms dating back to 1975.

  • Since Shapiro was sworn into office through the end of June 2024, only 111 bills were signed into law. This contrasts with an average of 223 bills enacted in the same time frame in the previous 12 terms.
  • Gov. Shapiro’s inability to persuade House Democrats, his own party, to get to work and pass his priorities—including completing the state budget—created a lack of legislative accomplishments.
  • Like Shapiro, most recent Pennsylvania governors served in a divided government; this is the seventh such term where the House majority is three seats or fewer.


  • While states have different legislative and legal structures regarding the size and complexity of bills, it is clear Pennsylvania, under Gov. Shapiro, held the least productive legislative session. Other governors with divided government are getting more stuff done.
  • For example, Pennsylvania remains without a completed state budget, one of only two states starting their fiscal year on July 1 without a budget. And last year the state budget was five months late – the last in the nation to be completed and signed by a governor.
  • The number of bills enacted in Gov. Josh Shapiro’s first year and six months were the least productive of any gubernatorial term in at least 50 years.
  • In terms of general legislation only, excluding appropriation bills, Shapiro’s 100 new laws signed are the fewest in the past 50 years. Even former Gov. Ed Rendell (2003) signed more General Acts in the first year and six months of his extremely contentious first term.
  • 77 bills were enacted into law in Pennsylvania in 2023, the least of any state with divided government. From January 1, 2024 to June 30, 2024, only 34 bills were signed into law, the second least of any state with divided government during that span.