October 3rd, 2008
08:33 AM ET
6 years ago

Fact Check: Does Obama almost always vote with his party?

Has Obama ever broken with his party?
Has Obama ever broken with his party?

The Statement:
Gov. Sarah Palin said at the Oct. 2 vice presidential debate that Sen. Barack Obama has "pretty much only voted along his party lines. In fact, 96 percent of his votes have been solely along party line."

Get the facts!

The Facts:
Congressional Quarterly examined Obama's votes in the Senate. According to the analysis, Obama has indeed voted with the Democratic Party 96 percent of the time.

CQ – a non-partisan and highly respected journal of Congressional affairs – says Senator John McCain has voted in line with the Republican Party 86 percent of the time. McCain's total number of votes is much larger, since he has been in the Senate since 1986, while Obama is in his first term.

Congressional Quarterly also looked at what it deemed to be "key" votes. That analysis found Obama voted with his party on 29 out of 30 votes, which came out to 97 percent of the time. For McCain, CQ said there have been 335 "key" votes over the years, and that he voted with his party on 266 of them - 79 percent of the time.

The Verdict: True.

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