The New York Times analyzed the attendance records of our industrious Congressional representatives and learned that almost 20 members—including presidents of The Future Ron Paul and Michele Bachmann—missed 10 percent of the votes this year. But one Congressman outshone his peers in the art of absenteeism: time-traveling garden gnome Don Young of Alaska, who missed 16 percent of the votes.

This makes Young the most-absent person in Congress, if you don't count the members who are running for president or those like Gabrielle Giffords (technically this year's winner) who are suffering from serious health issues [we initially forgot to include this bit of context—Ed.]. What makes him think he's so special, that he can go gallivanting about and miss work all the time? Mainly his sexy ways and his pretty smile, but also clout: He's been a part of Alaska politics since before Jesus was born (1967) and a Congressman since 1973. He's an institution. He doesn't need you, or your rules.

When the Times tried to get a more precise answer as to why he's such a work-avoiding slob, "Mr. Young did not respond to a request made on the House floor last Thursday to discuss the matter, because, in fact, he was not there." In his stead, a spokesman pointed out that "Alaska is over 10,000 miles away round trip," which is far. Yet not too far for any of Alaska's other elected Congresscreeps to show up to work on the regular. Then again, they're not as sexy.

[NYT. Image via AP]