Proxy Voting / Polling (CongressionalGlossary.com)

From the Congressional Glossary – Including Legislative and Budget Terms

Proxy Voting / Polling

20120127_0028_flk, by B@rberousse

20120127_0028_flk, by B@rberousse

The practice of allowing a senator to cast a vote in committee, if committee rules allow it, for an absent senator. Senate Rule XXVI provides that proxies may not be voted when the absent senator has not been informed of the matter on which he is being recorded and has not requested that he be so recorded.

Proxy voting is a practice whereby an absent senator authorizes a second, present, senator to cast her vote in addition to their own during a committee markup meeting. When polling, a committee or subcommittee asks its members to approve questions relating to legislation or internal committee business without formally meeting. Under Senate rules and precedents, committees have significant freedom to regulate their use of proxies and polls. Proxy votes may not be used, however, to constitute the quorum necessary to successfully order a committee report. In addition, senators must be informed about and affirmatively request to vote by proxy on the motion to report. With respect to polling, Senate rules do not permit committees to order a measure or matter reported to the Senate by poll.

Also see Pair.

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