HARRISBURG -- An embattled state representative returned to the state Capitol in Harrisburg after missing 300 votes over the past six months.
Kevin Haggerty's Democratic colleagues recently declared his last three no-shows in Harrisburg unexcused absences. Two more consecutive absences and he could have been cited for contempt of the State House.
Democratic State Representative Sid Kavulich of Clarks Summit uses a walker as he recovers from hip replacement surgery.
If Kevin Haggerty didn't show today, Kavulich planned to walk to the State House chamber and be the next area Democrat to make a motion that Kevin Haggerty's absence be unexcused.
But 11 minutes before the house reconvened, Haggerty showed up. The representative from Dunmore said nothing about his no-shows or his return.
Two fellow Democrats who started the process of holding Haggerty in contempt did speak.
"I'm thrilled that he's here. It's important to be here to represent folks in Lackawanna County and to cast votes on their behalf," said State Rep. Mike Carroll, (D) 118th District.
In this story
State Representative Gerald Mullery, who represents the Nanticoke area, has been one of Haggerty's toughest critics.
Haggerty has now missed 300 votes, including key ones on the state budget and on a plan to tax natural gas drillers.
"He's disenfranchised the people of his legislative district. He's taken away their voice in Harrisburg. It's been an embarrassment not only to folks that he represents and himself, to the entire Democratic caucus, but the General Assembly as a whole," said State Rep. Gerald Mullery, (D) 119th District.
Rep. Haggerty recently told Newswatch 16's Stacy Lange, he didn't go to Harrisburg so he could be closer to his young kids while he goes through a divorce.
But recently, there has been more trouble for the state representative. A bank repossessed his Jeep and a picture of the state representative making an obscene gesture at a restaurant in Dunmore surfaced on the internet.
But will the damage from this on top of his poor attendance cloud Haggerty's political future.
"That will be a decision for the folks of his district to make," Rep. Carroll said.
Several colleagues say they will keep an eye on Rep. Haggerty's attendance in the coming weeks. He missed 180 votes during his first term in the 2013-2014 session. He's missed 300 during this fall's session and even though he showed up on Monday, he did not join his fellow Democrats during an afternoon strategy session.