Recall all the media attention on how many votes Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., missed during the 2016 GOP presidential primary? Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz?
With the 2020 Democratic primary off to a crowded start, two senators are quickly taking the lead in missing votes, with much less media fanfare.
These same two senators are also failing to live up to a campaign promise of not taking contributions from special interest lobbyists, proving early on that it’s hard to walk the talk when you talk so freely.
There’s virtually an army of Democratic candidates vying to be the person to fall to President Donald Trump in 2020, to include six senators. Among the six, Sens. Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Kamala Harris, D-Calif., have missed the most votes in the Senate so far this year, The Hill reported.
According to an analysis of 77 roll call votes since the start of the 116th Congress, Booker and Harris have both missed 16 votes on the Senate floor.
Of the other four candidates, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., leads the way with seven missed votes, followed by Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., and Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., with three missed votes, according to The Hill’s analysis.
The senator with the nearly perfect record is Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., having only missed one vote.
Booker and Harris share another trait, that being taking donations from lobbyists despite each making a vow not to.
Booker seems to be working the hardest at splitting hairs, as his campaign has returned donations from federally registered lobbyists, but has accepted donations from state and municipal registered lobbyists who do not appear in federal disclosures, according to The Intercept’s Lee Fang.
A half dozen to be exact.
Harris has also collected donations from registered corporate lobbyists in South Carolina, New York, and California, Fang reported.
“Several technology lobbyists from San Francisco have given to her campaign. Another Harris donor, Robert Crowe, from the firm, Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, is a federal lobbyist who has worked to influence Congress on behalf of pipeline firm EQT Corporation and Alphabet, the parent company of Google,” Fang wrote.
Robert Francis “Beto” O’Rourke has also reneged on a promise to run a campaign financed by regular people, and “not PACs, not lobbyists, not corporations, and not special interests.”
Citing the latest filing by O’Rourke’s campaign, Fang noted that the candidate “accepted donations from a federal utility-company lobbyist and a top Chevron lobbyist in New Mexico.”
Meanwhile, it doesn’t require much imagination to think the Trump campaign is quietly taking notes.
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