Eighteen of the 40 Kansas Senators had 100 percent voting attendance in the 2011 legislative session that adjourned on June 1. These senators were present and voted in 342 Senate votes.
Eight senators missed a single vote and 5 missed two votes achieving 99 percent voting attendance.
With one exception, the voting attendance of the remaining senators ranged from 93.6 to 98.2 percent.
Senator Les Donovan was present for only about 8 percent of the votes but had a heavy burden taking care of his sick wife during most of the session.
Senator Bob Marshall said his “low” 93.6 percent voting percentage was explained by his absence for more than a week due to a health issue. But Marshall added “the first two years I hadn’t missed a session.” In 2009 and 2010 Marshall had 100 percent attendance.
Senator Julia Lynn, who missed 20 of 342 votes and recorded a 94.2 percent attendance, remembered missing votes on two days for sickness and family business.
On the last day of the session Lynn said she knew she missed about four votes after 4 AM. Lynn said she waited till about 3:30 AM for the final votes but had to leave to catch a previously-scheduled 6 AM flight.
Several local Kansas newspapers published stories about the perfect attendance of their local state senator.
The Johnson County Sun reported the perfect voting attendance for State Senators John Vratil and Terrie Huntington, but failed to mention that Johnson County State Senator Mary Pilcher-Cook also had a 100 percent voting attendance. Sun News editor Chuck Kurtz was not immediately available for comment about why Pilcher-Cook’s name was not included.
The table below shows the voting attendance statistics for all Kansas Senators.
Voting Attendance for Kansas Senate, 2011
|First||Last||Dist||Party||Total Votes||Member Votes||Percentage|
Source: Kansas Senate President’s Director of Communications Patti Van Slyke
*Sen. Donovan was gone for a large portion of the session because his wife was dying of cancer. She passed away before Sine Die.
** Sen. Allen Schmidt was not elected until part way through the session when he was named to succeed Janis Lee. He was present and voting for all votes after his election.
Attendance by committee is not readily available.
Van Slyke explained that committee chairs are given a great deal of discretion in running a committee and that attendance is kept by each chair.
- Apple recognized for voting record, Osawatomie Graphic.
- Vratil, Huntington praised for perfect voting attendance record, Johnson County Sun, June 20, 2011.
- Sen. Garrett Love turns in perfect voting attendance, High Plains Daily Leader / Southwest Daily Times, June 10, 2011.
- Lawrence senator again achieves perfect attendance, Lawrence Journal-World, June 17, 2011.
- Schmidt recognized for attendance, Hays Daily News, June 9, 2011.
- Senate President commends Sen. Jeff Longbine for perfect voting attendance, Emporia Gazette, June 9, 2011.
- Sen. Steve Abrams honored for perfect attendance, Wellington Daily News, June 9, 2011.
Contact: Earl F Glynn, email@example.com, KansasWatchdog.org
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