Oops — House votes twice on veterans bill after sponsor misses first vote

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(CNN) — When the chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee missed the vote on his bill allowing veterans waiting for health care to access non-VA facilities, he got a do-over.

“It’s on me,” Miller told reporters Tuesday outside the House chamber, admitting that he was the reason the House was voting twice on his legislation.

The Florida Republican explained that he was in a meeting in his office with the door closed and he missed a message from his staff on his iPhone, so he didn’t make it to the floor in time. In his absence the measure passed the House unanimously, 421-0.

When House Republican leaders realized that the bill’s author didn’t make it to the floor in time for the vote, they used a procedural move to do away with the first action and allow a second vote on the measure.

Miller said the second roll call recorded on the House floor will stand as the official vote, and the bill was passed unanimously – again, 426-0.

“Actually we got a better outcome the second time,” Miller quipped.

Four others besides Miller who missed the first vote showed up for the second one. Some lawmakers didn’t vote at all, due to illness and other issues that force members to miss votes.

By Deirdre Walsh

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