The Children’s Defense Fund recently rated the members of the Senate by their performance on ten votes that are relevant to the nation’s children. The votes were:
1. Increase minimum wage (H.R. 2)
2. Increase funding for children with disabilities (S. Con. Res. 21)
3. Protect children from unsafe medications (S. 1082)
4. 2008 Budget resolution (S. Con. Res. 21)
5. SCHIP Reauthorization (H.R. 976)
6. College Cost Reduction and Access Act (H.R. 2669)
7. SCHIP (H.R. 976 – motion to concur)
8. DREAM Act (S. 2205)
9. Funding child health and education (H.R. 3043)
10. Improving Head Start programs (H.R. 1429)
The lowest-scoring Senator, and the only Senator under 20 percent, was John McCain. (Sorry, I mean John Sidney McCain.) He scored so low because he constantly misses important votes. In fact, he’s missed more votes in the Senate than anyone else, save the man who suffered a brain hemorrhage.
Look, all of the presidential candidates have missed something like 30-40 percent of their recent Senate votes (Hillary Clinton deserves credit for having missed only 28 percent). But McCain is in a category by himself: he’s missed 57 percent. You can argue that he has neglected the nation’s children, but it is more accurate to say he has neglected the nation’s business altogether.
PS — This isn’t a new problem for McCain. In spring 2007, he went five straight weeks without voting.
(H/T Think Progress)