Justin Amash

Justin Amash Very Sad After Missing First Vote in Congress. Hug Him If You See Him.

Show a libertarian some love.


Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call/Newscom

Friends of liberty, Rep. Justin Amash needs your support now more than ever.

The libertarian-leaning Republican congressmen accidentally missed a roll call vote in the House of Representatives, thereby breaking his perfect attendance record. Since taking office in 2011, Amash had never missed single vote. That's 4,289 votes, according to Politico.

It was the 4,290th vote that got him. Amash was talking to reporters about House Republicans' Obamacare replacement bill—a bill that Amash despises—Friday afternoon when he realized the House was taking a vote:

Amash immediately sprinted into the chamber and tried to put his card in the voting slot to cast his yea or nay, but the vote had closed. …

When he realized his streak had just ended, the blunt-spoken congressman broke down in tears.

Prior to today, Amash had three things to be proud of: 1) never missing a vote, 2) explaining all his votes on Facebook, and 3) maintaining arguably the most libertarian voting record of any member of Congress. (Also, he's hilarious on Twitter, so make that four things.)

It's understandable that Amash is pretty upset, but he shouldn't beat himself up too much. He's still one of the most (only?) dedicated defenders of limited government left in the federal government. Most refreshingly, he isn't afraid to criticize members of his own party (or its leader) when they go astray (which happens quite a lot). And who could forget his advice to snowflake legislators like Sen. Marco Rubio who were afraid that they might get their feelings hurt if they attended a townhall?

So here's a sentence probably no one at Reason has ever written: If you see the congressman, give him a hug.

Note: There are conflicting reports as to whether Amash literally shed tears over the missed votes. Politico says yes, Independent Journal Review says no: