Missing in action | Arkansas Blog

Monday, September 18, 2006

Missing in action

Posted By on Mon, Sep 18, 2006 at 2:47 PM

Unavoidably absent? Or dodging key votes? Gunner DeLay, Republican candidate for attorney general, raises the questions about Democratic opponent Dustin McDaniel. DeLay says McDaniel was absent or voted present on one in five votes during his legislative service. News release on the jump.

Since the McDaniel response is brief and pithy, here it is::

"Rep. McDaniel has been recognized statewide for his leadership in the legislature and has broad support from his colleagues in the House and Senate.  DeLay has been sued for not paying his bills for his law office and risked criminal prosecution for not paying his taxes.  That’s the contrast the voters see, so Gunner has no choice but to make frivolous attacks on Dustin.  That’s all this is,” said Melissa Moody.


Little Rock – Last week, republican candidate for attorney general, Gunner DeLay, challenged his opponent about his failure to support three bills in the 2005 session related to veterans’ issues.  McDaniel responded by stating that it is unavoidable that legislators miss votes on occasion. DeLay countered today by pointing out, “McDaniel has missed more than an occasional vote; he has a habit of missing votes on really key issues.”

DeLay further stated, “I certainly understand as a former legislator that there are instances when missing a vote is unavoidable.  However, each legislator decides for himself what votes he is willing to miss. McDaniel’s voting record shows an extraordinarily high number of votes ‘present’ or not voting and many of those were on key issues.  To me, that is not what being a leader is about.  As a legislator you have to make tough decisions.  If you can’t do that as a first term representative how in the world are you going to do that as attorney general?”

McDaniel’s record shows that of approximately 2594 votes cast in the 2005 regular session, McDaniel either did not vote or voted present  452 times.  That is nearly 20%.   Some of the key votes he took a pass on were:

SB 466    An Act to Give Children of Disabled Veterans Free College Tuition
HB 1758 An Act to Require Notification to Victims When Executive Clemency is                              granted
HB 2862 An Act to Classify Attempted Murder as a Class Y felony
SB 74       The Unborn Child Pain Awareness and Prevention Act
SB 174     The International Child Abduction Prevention Act
SB 263     An Act to Establish Juneteenth Independence Day
SB 593     The Public School Academic Facilities Program Act
SB 1082   The University Funding Formula
SB 1137   Higher Education Improvement Bonds
In the special session McDaniel also failed to vote on HB 1014, which would have saved the Paron School District and others like it. 

 DeLay noted that skipping one in every five votes is inexcusable.” I am sure his constituents did not send him to Little Rock to take a pass on that many votes.  Does that mean as attorney general he will avoid the tough decisions and only work 80% of the time? People in the factories can’t do that, why should we let someone in state government do it?  The people of Arkansas will have to decide whether that is acceptable job performance.” 



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