WASHINGTON, D.C. — Club for Growth Foundation today released its Missed Votes Indiana scorecard for the General Assembly’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.
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.”
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.
This scorecard is based on a review of all floor votes taken in the Indiana General Assembly from January 25, 2021 to October 1, 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.
The average Indiana senator missed 4 percent of 462 total floor votes, with Republican senators on average missing 3 percent of all floor votes and Democrat senators on average missing 9 percent of all floor votes. Sen. Frank Mrvan (SD-1) missed the most votes- 196 votes out 462 – for a score of 42% missed votes. By not missing a single vote, the following senators received a perfect attendance score:
- James Buck (SD-21)
- Chris Garten (SD-45)
- Susan Glick (SD-13)
- Ronald Grooms (SD-46)
- Eric Koch (SD-44)
- Dennis Kruse (SD-14)
- Timothy Lanane (SD-25)
- Jean Leising (SD-42)
- James Tomes (SD-49)
- Kyle Walker (SD-31)
- Shelli Yoder (SD-40)
- Andy Zay (SD-17)
Indiana House of Representatives
The average Indiana House member missed 7 percent of 460 total floor votes, with Republican members on average missing 8 percent of all floor votes and Democrat members on average missing 7 percent of all floor votes. Rep. Todd Huston (HD-37) missed the most votes – 393 out of 460, – for a score of 85% missed votes. By not missing a single vote, the following house members received a perfect attendance score:
- Mike Andrade (HD-12)
- John Jacob (HD-93)
- Timothy O’Brien (HD-78) *O’Brien assumed office on 3/30/2021
We asked the lawmakers who missed at least 10% of the votes if they’d like us to include an explanation. Here are the responses we received:
Rep. Todd Huston (HD-37): The Speaker is the officer in charge of directing the chamber during each legislative session day. This includes managing the House calendar, opening and closing the voting machines, allowing other members to speak and debate legislation, among other various logistical duties during the session proceedings. Because of these additional duties, our House Rules actually include a section regarding the requirement of him voting.
House Rule 27:
- Voting. The Speaker is not required to vote in ordinary legislative proceedings. But when the House is equally divided on a question, the Speaker shall give the deciding vote. When his or her vote would make an equal division, the Speaker shall vote upon the call of any member.
This rule is included so the Speaker can focus on directing the chamber and lead each legislative session day. For reference, The House Rules are adopted during our Organization Day and govern the House for the term of the General Assembly per the Constitution.
Rep. Mike Karickhoff (HD-30): My voting record reflects my position as Speaker Pro Tempore. The presiding officer does not vote unless it’s an agenda Bill or the vote is required to break a tie. You will find the 55 votes missed votes I was presiding at the time of the vote.
Sen. Frank Mrvan (SD-1): Shortly before session, Senator Mrvan experienced a non-COVID related illness. Following the advice of doctors, Senator Mrvan missed the first part of session to recover safely at home. He received an excused absence from the Senate during this time, and returned to session as soon as he was able.