Demings Blasts Rubio's Attendance Record, Forgets Senate Doesn't Allow Proxy Votes

Demings Blasts Rubio's Attendance Record, Forgets Senate Doesn't Allow Proxy Votes

Grayson Bakich
Grayson Bakich
October 10, 2022

The battle between Rep. Val Demings (D-FL-10) and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) for the Senate seat is coming down to the wire. Each has blasted the other hard on their campaign stances, but one consistent talking point by the Demings campaign is that, supposedly, Rubio "doesn't show up for work." This was the focal point of a recent tweet by Demings, where she responds to a voice clip of Rubio's appearance on the Guy Benson Show.

In the clip, Rubio says "she's never been involved in anything important for her community, or for the state, not to mention for the country."

An incensed Demings responds, "how dare Marco Rubio question my record of service after I served 27 years in law enforcement. I’ve dedicated my life to public service and I’ll actually show up for work in the Senate."

While it is inevitable that a Senator may lose days at work, and Rubio did have a poor attendance record back in the 2010s, such a criticism is, as the Tallahassee Democrat said in 2015, a red herring. After all, attendance is most important when the bill in question to be voted on is itself highly important, and committee meetings can take up time as well.

More importantly, there is a noticeable difference in how voting in the Senate works compared to the House. The Senate is in session nearly every day, while the House is in session approximately two weeks of every month. Additionally, the House allows for "proxy voting," that is, voting remotely, while the Senate does not.

Demings herself proxy voted 52 times since the voting practice was put in place. While this is only 7% of her vote record, it is worth noting that the top five proxy voters representing Florida are all Democrats, with Al Lawson alone voting by proxy almost 98% of the time.

Either way you look at it, Demings could appear to be a bit hypocritical considering that she has not shown up for work to cast about 10o votes herself, rather having one of her colleagues cast the vote for her.

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Grayson Bakich

Grayson Bakich

Florida born and raised, Grayson Bakich is a recent recipient of a Master’s Degree in Political Science at the University of Central Florida. His thesis examined recent trends in political polarization and how this leads into justification of violence.

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