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Obama Says Goodbye to His Voting Streak

All good streaks come to an end, and Sen. Barack Obama's was no exception.

It may not have measured up to Joe DiMaggio's 56 game hit streak, or Cal Ripken's 2,600-plus games played streak.
But it was nice to know that, as of yesterday, at least one of the senators running for president had shown up for every roll call vote in the chamber.

After making it to 56 straight votes this year on the chamber floor, Sen. Obama (D-Ill.) missed his 57th vote Friday, bypassing his senatorial duties on a homeland security bill to instead deliver a speech to the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee meeting in Chicago.

"He really hoped to make it back to Washington in time, but it turns out, that was just the audacity of hope," spokesman Ben LaBolt said of the streak ending.

As Capitol Briefing had previously noted, Obama was the last of the six senators already declared for the presidential campaign to have made every vote in the chamber this year. He also missed a second vote on Friday as well, both of which were amendments that sailed to easy passage on the ongoing debate over the homeland security bill.

Obama wasn't alone in missing votes Friday. Declared candidates Joe Biden (D-Del.), Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) missed both votes. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) made it to both votes.
Heck, if politics were baseball, Biden and McCain were barely on the field last week. Out of the six votes held on the homeland security bill, they made it to one apiece.

Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.), who still hasn't declared whether he's running or not, continues to miss votes in a way that makes him appear presidential. He missed both votes Friday. With his vote-missing proclivity this week, McCain moved into the top 10 of most votes missed by a senator.

Of those 10 most absentee senators, four are actively running for the White House, while Hagel is actively considering it. Obama and Clinton are tied with two votes missed each, the best attendance on Senate votes out of the '08 crowd so far.

Oh, and for those of you wondering how difficult it is to make every vote, 34 Senators - more than a third of the chamber - have perfect voting attendance so far this year.

By Paul Kane  |  March 2, 2007; 4:00 PM ET
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