The House on Tuesday passed its Veterans Access to Care Act 421-0.
And then it passed it again 426-0 in a "revote."
What prompted the do-over?
Turns out, several members who intended to cast votes actually missed the first roll-call—including even the bill's main sponsor, Veterans' Affairs Committee Chairman Jeff Miller, a Florida Republican.
Reporters outside the chamber, initially puzzled about the repeat vote, pressed Miller afterwards.
Miller acknowledged, "I missed the first vote. I was in my office and missed the first vote."
But determining who the other four lawmakers were—who also did not answer the first bell only to show up for the second—is not as simple. The official historical House record of that vote has been vacated completely.
As a humorous aside, GOP Rep. Kevin Brady of Texas quickly sent out a press release after the votes declaring: "House Votes to Ensure Timely VA Health Care."
Timely for the VA and veterans, maybe, but not for a handful of snoozing lawmakers.
This article appears in the June 10, 2014 edition of NJ Daily.