WASHINGTON, D.C. — Club for Growth Foundation today released its Missed Votes Alaska scorecard for the State Legislature’s 2021 regular and special sessions. The newly launched Missed Votes Scorecards calculate how often lawmakers show up to vote and how often they miss votes.
Lawmakers miss votes for a whole host of reasons, including medical issues, family concerns, prior commitments, purely political motivations, or other reasons. The Club for Growth Foundation generally doesn’t analyze why a lawmaker has missed a vote and is simply publishing this quantified information for educational purposes only.
According to Club for Growth Foundation President David McIntosh, “Constituents need to know the missed votes records of their representatives so they can decide for themselves if elected officials are avoiding a difficult vote or have a legitimate reason for missing a particular vote. Sadly, this information is often not available, and that is why the Club for Growth Foundation is publishing Missed Votes scorecards.”
This scorecard is based on a review of a grouping of floor votes taken in the Alaska State Legislature from February 3, 2021 to October 4, 2021. There are inherent limitations in judging the overall qualifications of any legislator based on how many votes he or she has missed, and the Club for Growth Foundation does not endorse or oppose any legislator for public office. We expect all lawmakers to know their own voting records ahead of this publication.
The average Alaska senator missed 5 percent of 163 total floor votes, with Republican senators on average missing 4 percent of all floor votes and Democrat senators on average missing 7 percent of all floor votes. Sen. Donald Olson (SD-T) missed the most votes – 32 out of 163– for a score of 20 percent missed votes. By not missing a single vote, the following senators received a perfect attendance score:
- Roger Holland (SD-N)
- Peter Micciche (SD-O)
Alaska House of Representatives
The average Alaska House member missed 3 percent of 313 total floor votes, with Republican members on average missing 3 percent of all floor votes and Democrat members on average missing 2 percent of all floor votes. Rep. Josiah Patkotak (HD-40) missed the most votes – 87 out of 313– for a score of 28 percent missed votes. By not missing a single vote, the following House members received a perfect attendance score:
- Harriet Drummond (HD-18)
- David Eastman (HD-10)
- Sara Hannan (HD-33)
- Liz Snyder (HD-27)
- Louise Stutes (HD-32)
- Cathy Tilton (HD-12)
- Sarah Vance (HD-31)
We asked lawmakers who missed at least 10 percent of the votes if they’d like us to include an explanation. Here are the responses we received:
David Nelson (HD-15)
Thank you for this information and the opportunity to respond. I am the State Representative for District 15 in Alaska, however I am also a member the Alaska Army National Guard. As a member of the guard I am obligated to attend 2 weeks of annual training and monthly drill duties.
Natasha Ann von Imhof (SD-L)
Sen. von Imhof released a public statement last session that her husband is fighting cancer and, with the support and encouragement of her colleagues, would be traveling back and forth to her district (560 miles away in Anchorage – a 1.5 hour flight from the Capitol) to be home for his treatments. She was present for all essential and controversial votes, incl the budgets – for regular session and all four special sessions.
I hope this addresses your concerns.