Hutchison AWOL from Senate Vote on ACORN

Matt Lewis

9/15/2009 10:15:00 AM - Matt Lewis
As I noted last night, Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison is failing to keep pace with Governor Rick Perry's endorsements. 

Now, some are accusing her of failing to do her job as a U.S. Senator, as well.

Rick Perry's gubernatorial campaign has pointed out that Senator Hutchison was AWOL on an important vote to defund ACORN. 

As the Dallas Morning News reports:
The Senate voted Monday to cut off funding for ACORN, the anti-poverty group that has become a target of the conservative talk radio and Fox TV. The vote was overwhelming, but Kay Bailey Hutchison didn't vote. And Rick Perry's campaign wants to know why.

Says Perry spokesman Mark Miner: "Less than one week after the Senate returned to work, Senator Hutchison skipped a key vote to prevent ACORN from receiving taxpayer funds from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This is yet another example of Senator Hutchison failing to protect the taxpayers of Texas. The Senator made time to vote for a $700 billion bailout for Wall Street, but when it came time to prevent tax dollars from going to a liberal activist group, she was nowhere to be found."

Aside from the obvious point that ACORN has dominated conservative talk for the last week or so, the other problem for KBH is that going AWOL is not new for Senator Hutchison. The Dallas Morning News has previously reported on her missing key Senate Committee Hearings:

Hutchison has been absent from the committee's work on two top priorities of Congress: health care legislation and consumer protection. When she recently announced her departure from the Senate in the fall, she said she'd stay in Washington long enough to participate in the health legislation. [However,] Hutchison missed all four Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee hearings that explored problems with health insurers, including one that showed insurers "purge" small-business beneficiaries if their claims exceed underwriters' expectations.
 
It is inherently difficult to oust an incumbent, especially one in your own party.  But this task is made nearly impossible when you fail to show up to work.   It's hard to imagine her calculus on this ...