Jul 21, 2015 at 12:00 PM
The Michigan Senate took 1,082 roll call votes during 2012 and the House took 904.
Although the figure is slightly higher than the 1,437 votes missed by individual lawmakers in 2011, on a percentage basis it is lower since nearly twice as many total votes were taken this year.
The number of missed votes has been on a dramatic downward trajectory since 2001-02, when MichiganVotes.org began tracking this information and the average number was more than 10,000 every year.
During the 2012 session, four senators and six representatives missed 50 or more votes each. Thirteen senators and 62 representatives missed no votes.
Sen. Arlan Meekhof, R-West Olive, missed 19 of the Senate's 1,912 roll calls. Rep. Amanda Price, R-Park Township, missed none of the House's 904 votes.
Only two senators voted in all of the roll calls in 2012: Joe Hune, R-Hamburg, and Tory Rocca, R-Sterling Heights. Bert Johnson, D-Highland Park, missed the most: 241. The second-worst was Morris Hood III, D-Detroit, with 113 missed votes.
Jimmy Womack, D-Detroit, missed the most votes (nearly half) in the House: 450. The second-worst was John Olumba, D-Detroit, who missed 238.
For the complete “Missed Votes Report," click here.
By clicking on a legislator’s name, you can see a brief, plain-English description of the actual votes that he or she missed. Missed vote totals for previous periods can be viewed by entering a different date range.
McHugh noted that, in most cases, missed votes occur when other demands within the legislative process call a lawmaker off the floor for a few minutes, or when serious family or personal issues require an absence for an entire day or longer.
“Legislators are people, too,” he said. “We shouldn’t jump to conclusions or assume bad faith. But if a legislator demonstrates a consistent pattern of missed votes for months on end, voters have a right to ask why."
MichiganVotes.org is a free website provided by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. It provides concise, objective, plain-English descriptions of every bill and every vote by every politician in the Michigan Legislature. It is searchable and sortable by legislator, topic, keywords, date range and more.