McCain Leads — In Missed Votes
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) didn’t show up Thursday for the big Senate vote on the Iraq spending bill. The day before, he missed the final passage of education investment legislation, and the day before that, he skipped roll call votes on four amendments and a judicial confirmation. McCain hasn’t voted in the Senate since April 12.
Since the beginning of the year, McCain has missed at least seven Iraq-related votes, including the confirmation of the individual whom McCain and other Republicans are counting on to turn the war around, Gen. David H. Petraeus.
The Senate has held 147 roll call votes so far this year. McCain has been absent a total of 60 times, by far the worst showing of the 2008 candidates who are also sitting senators. The second-worst offender is Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.), who has skipped 41 votes, including the first vote of the year, a Jan. 8 resolution honoring former president Gerald R. Ford. McCain missed that one, too, as did another high-volume absentee, Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.), who has missed 37 votes. Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.), who is serving his fifth term, hasn’t shown 26 times.
Looked at another way, all six 2008 candidates were present together on the Senate floor just 46 times, for fewer than a third of all votes. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) has the best attendance record of the year, missing just three votes, followed by Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.), who was absent seven times.