Politics

Bernie Sanders On Showing Up For Senate Votes: 'It's What I'm Paid To Do'

| by Robert Fowler
Sen. Bernie Sanders of VermontSen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont

Democratic Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont has missed the least amount of Congressional votes out of all the senators running for the presidency. Sanders sat down with MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell on Nov. 3, telling her that showing up for votes is “kind of what I’m paid to do.”

While Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida has received criticism for missing senate votes throughout his presidential campaign, a tally conducted by Vox reveals that this is a normal trend for most working congressmen who seek the presidency.

Thirteen to 16 months before the 2008 general election, then-Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois actually had as bad a voting record as Rubio does in the year 2015. Meanwhile, Sen. John McCain of Arizona reportedly didn’t show up for a single vote during the final seven months of his 2008 presidential campaign.

However, Sanders currently has missed the least amount of votes out of both the senators who ran in the 2008 and those running in the 2016 presidential races. He has only missed 3 percent of senate votes, Vox reported. MSNBC, however, calculated it to be 4 percent, according to the Associated Press.

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When asked about balancing his senate duties with running a presidential campaign, Sanders told Andrea Mitchell that “I’m trying to miss as few (votes) as I possibly can."

“I am extraordinarily proud to represent my great state in the Senate,” Sanders added. “We’re working very hard on a number of issues. And while it is difficult and very time-consuming to be a full-time candidate and to be a full-time senator, that is at the moment what I’m trying to do.”

During his interview with Mitchell, Sanders was also asked about former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who is currently the Democratic front-runner.

“I think she is ahead in the polls because I think she is much better known than I am,” Sanders said.

“We started as an underdog [and] we are still an underdog,” Sanders added. “The kind of enthusiasm that we are generating tells me that, at the end of the day, we are going to win this election.”

Sources: MSNBC, AP via The Sacramento BeeVox / Photo Credit: Phil Roeder/Flickr, Gage Skidmore/Flickr