By a vote of 235 to 193, the US House voted to approve Rep. Paul Ryan's 2012 budget plan that would slash taxes on the wealthiest Americans while ending Medicare as we know it. Every single Democrat voted against the bill, joined by only four Republicans. And WA-08's own Rep. Dave Reichert, our "conscience-driven independent"? He was one of only four representatives, and the only Republican not to cast a vote.

Way to take a tough stand on principle, Dave.

Or, maybe I'm being unfair. For example, one of the other members not voting was Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. So perhaps Rep. Reichert missed such a crucial and high profile vote, not out of political cowardice, but due to a head injury of his own? I'm sure his office will quickly respond to my query and clear things up.

UPDATE: I just assumed I wouldn't get a response from Reichert's office because I've never gotten one in the past, but don't I look foolish:

Mercer Island, WA, Apr 14 - Congressman Dave Reichert (WA-08) did not return to Washington, DC this week due to his mother’s deteriorating health. Reichert’s mother, Marlys Klontz, died early this morning, ending her 18-month battle with pancreatic cancer.

Congressman Reichert’s office has contacted leadership to advise them he is unavailable to vote, and that he will submit for the record a statement of how he would have voted on the 2011 continuing resolution and the 2012 budget. Reichert will resume his normal schedule next week, with the exception of Wednesday when he will attend a funeral and memorial services with his family.

I suppose had I been on his office's media list, I might have known that. Still, my apologies.

UPDATE, UPDATE: And Reichert's office issued a statement saying that he would've voted for it.