TO PASS S. 2986.
Our database of roll call votes from 1789-1989 (1990 for House votes) comes from an academic data source, VoteView.com, that has digitized paper records going back more than 200 years. Because of the difficulty of this task, the accuracy of these vote records is reduced.
From October 2014 through July 2015, we displayed incorrect vote totals in some cases. Although the total correctly reflected the announced positions of Members of Congress, the totals incorrectly included “paired” votes, which is when two Members of Congress, one planning to vote in favor and the other against, plan ahead of time to both abstain.
In addition, these records do not always distinguish between Members of Congress not voting (abstaining) from Members of Congress who were not eligible to vote because they had not yet taken office, or for other reasons. As a result, you may see extra not-voting entries and in these cases Senate votes may show more than 100 senators listed!
“Aye” and “Yea” mean the same thing, and so do “No” and “Nay”. Congress uses different words in different sorts of votes.
The U.S. Constitution says that bills should be decided on by the “yeas and nays” (Article I, Section 7). Congress takes this literally and uses “yea” and “nay” when voting on the final passage of bills.
All Senate votes use these words. But the House of Representatives uses “Aye” and “No” in other sorts of votes.
Statistically Notable Votes
Statistically notable votes are the votes that are most surprising, or least predictable, given how other members of each voter’s party voted.