Ford’s Expert Debating Skills Needed to
Explain Hundreds of Missed Votes
One of Washington’s Most Skilled Orators to be Put to Test at Saturday Debate
Washington Congressman Harold Ford Jr, known as one of the most skilled orators in the U.S. House of Representatives, tells anyone who will listen that he wants to debate GOP Senate candidate Bob Corker. Ford will get his chance on Saturday when he debates Corker in Memphis, and Corker for Senate communications director Todd Womack says the expert debater will be held accountable for the hundreds of congressional votes he has missed.
“Everyone knows how good Ford is as a debater and as one of Washington’s best orators. He’ll need to show his ‘A’ game to explain the hundreds of votes he’s missed over his career,” said Womack. “Even a debating expert like Congressman Ford will have to brush up on his slick rhetoric to try to explain away his embarrassing record of missing key votes in DC in order to raise campaign cash.”
Just last week, Congressman Ford missed critical votes on protecting our children, security, and private property rights. He had previously said he would not miss “important” votes.
Ford Has Missed At Least 189 Votes This Congress, 15.9% Of Votes Cast, The 5th Most In Congress. (The Washington Post Website, “Votes Database,” projects.washingtonpost.com, Accessed October 3, 2006)
Ford: “I Might As Well Put You On Notice Now. I’m Going To Miss Some More [Votes] … Unfortunately, I Gotta Raise $15 Million [For His Senate Campaign], And I Gotta Figure Out How I Can Touch A Few Million Voters To Win This Race, But I Won’t Miss The Important [Votes].” (Hank Hayes, “Ford Calls For Suspension Of Federal Gas Tax,” Kingsport Times News, July 7, 2006)
Ford Spokeswoman Carol Andrews: “All Along, [Ford] Has Said In This Campaign He Would Not Be [In Washington, D.C.] For Every Vote Naming Bridges And Nonbinding Resolutions.” (Rebecca Ferrar, “Corker: Ford Shirked Vote,” Knoxville News Sentinel, September 15, 2006)
Among the votes Ford skipped last week:
• Parental Notification – Passage. “Passage of the bill that would make it a federal crime to take a minor across state lines to obtain an abortion in order to circumvent state parental notification and consent laws. It would provide an exception for cases in which an abortion is necessary to save the life of the minor. Physicians who perform an abortion on an out-of-state minor would have to provide at least 24 hours notice to the minor’s parent. Violators would be subject to a fine of up to $100,000 and up to one year in prison.” (S 403, CQ Vote #479: Passed 264-153: R 215-9; D 49-143; I 0-1, September 26, 2006, Ford Did Not Vote)
• Gun License Penalties – Passage. “Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., motion to suspend the rules and pass the bill that would allow the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to enforce civil penalties for gun license violations based on their severity. Fines of up to $2,500 per violation, with a maximum of $15,000, per inspection could be imposed for serious violations.” (HR 5092, CQ Vote #476: Motion Agreed To 277-131: R 213-8; D 63-123; I 1-0, September 26, 2006, Ford Did Not Vote)
• Eminent Domain – Passage. “Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., motion to suspend the rules and pass the bill that would streamline access to federal courts for people challenging government attempts to take their property under eminent domain and allow challengers to file their suits directly in federal court.” (H.R. 4772, CQ Vote #477, Motion Rejected 234-172: R 197-23; D 37-148; I 0-1, September 26, 2006, Ford Did Not Vote)