Sen. Susan Collins Nearing 5,000th Consecutive Vote

Maine Republican has never missed a vote

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Jul 9, 2012 8:23 AM CDT

(Newser) – Congress is less popular than waterboarding, but one senator's work ethic should meet with approval: Sen. Susan Collins is just three votes away from scoring an unbroken streak of 5,000 votes, the AP reports. The Republican from Maine has not missed a single vote since taking office in January 1997. And not without some effort: She once twisted her ankle as she ran, in heels, to reach the Senate floor in time and even made sure to schedule her upcoming wedding during the body's August recess.

The voting streak "demonstrates to my constituents my unwavering commitment to my job," Collins says. "I also think the people of Maine have a great work ethic and that they relate to it. They're very diligent about showing up for work and meeting their obligations. They're happy that I feel the same way." She doesn't yet take top honors, though. Sen. Charles Grassley has cast 6,444 consecutive votes in a streak going back to 1993, but unlike Collins, the Iowa Republican can't claim to have never missed a vote. Both have a long way to go to catch the record of 10,252 consecutive votes cast, set by Wisconsin Democrat William Proxmire between 1966 and 1988.

Sen. Susan Collins speaks at the Maine Republican Convention earlier this year.
Sen. Susan Collins speaks at the Maine Republican Convention earlier this year.   (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)
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