T Nation

Congress Raises Its Pay

I heard on the news that Congress just gave itself a $4000 raise. I want to give my self a raise too!

They do so according to this plan:

http://usgovinfo.about.com/cs/agencies/a/raise4congress.htm

Legalized looters, voting themselves more loot…how pathetic.

[quote]Headhunter wrote:
I heard on the news that Congress just gave itself a $4000 raise. I want to give my self a raise too!

They do so according to this plan:

http://usgovinfo.about.com/cs/agencies/a/raise4congress.htm

Legalized looters, voting themselves more loot…how pathetic.

[/quote]

Yes. Congress seems to do this a lot.

Wanna know why they can? It’s because Americans don’t really seem to care. No one is willing to really fight it at all.

Even if every single American knew this, I doubt most would do anything but some angry grumbling.

At least they are actually working 5 days a week under Nancy Pelosi. Last session, under Denny Hastert, the House only met something like 120 times. They had a three-days-a-week work schedule, under Hastert. I bet that was really grueling. At least now, the House is in session more than they are on vacation.

[quote]Brad61 wrote:
At least they are actually working 5 days a week under Nancy Pelosi. Last session, under Denny Hastert, the House only met something like 120 times. They had a three-days-a-week work schedule, under Hastert. I bet that was really grueling. At least now, the House is in session more than they are on vacation.[/quote]

The less they work the better off we are.

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:

The less they work the better off we are.[/quote]

Exactly. At best, they are out of the Beltway and back where their constituents are. At a minimum, they keep their paws off the government machinery more days.

As for Pelosi having people work 5 days instead of 3 - she has two extra days a week and has done even less than her predecessor. Never confuse action with progress.

So what are they taking home now and what was the percentage?

How often do private citizens get raises? yearly? That’s about right.

[quote]LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
So what are they taking home now and what was the percentage?

How often do private citizens get raises? yearly? That’s about right.[/quote]

You are not at all concerned with the fact that they essentially control their own wages?

An argument could be made that they should have to sacrifice money in return for the power they receive as politicians…

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:
Brad61 wrote:
At least they are actually working 5 days a week under Nancy Pelosi. Last session, under Denny Hastert, the House only met something like 120 times. They had a three-days-a-week work schedule, under Hastert. I bet that was really grueling. At least now, the House is in session more than they are on vacation.

The less they work the better off we are.[/quote]

Amen, I say we pay them not to work. Every time they convene, I lose rights.

[quote]LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
So what are they taking home now and what was the percentage?

How often do private citizens get raises? yearly? That’s about right.[/quote]

Yes, but citizens don’t continue to get paid even if they don’t work there anymore. These fuckers get paid for life. I need to be in congress for two years, then I can sit on my ass for a while and give some speeches.

[quote]SouthernBrew wrote:
You are not at all concerned with the fact that they essentially control their own wages?
[/quote]
No. Who else would control it? The president or judiciary? If the raises were excessive I might be concerned but I don’t know what would be considered excessive–greater than 4 or 5%, maybe.

[quote]
An argument could be made that they should have to sacrifice money in return for the power they receive as politicians…[/quote]

Very few congressmen have any “power”. The power of congress lies in majority alliances. No congressman has any power as an individual. Besides this, being a congressman is a very expensive undertaking. The better they get paid the less we have to worry they are taking bribes, etc.

[quote]LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
SouthernBrew wrote:
You are not at all concerned with the fact that they essentially control their own wages?

No. Who else would control it? The president or judiciary? If the raises were excessive I might be concerned but I don’t know what would be considered excessive–greater than 4 or 5%, maybe.

An argument could be made that they should have to sacrifice money in return for the power they receive as politicians…

Very few congressmen have any “power”. The power of congress lies in majority alliances. No congressman has any power as an individual. Besides this, being a congressman is a very expensive undertaking. The better they get paid the less we have to worry they are taking bribes, etc.
[/quote]

I do not believe this theory. They get paid well but not nearly enough to make them incorruptible.

I think they should not get paid any salary. Maybe a housing and transportation allowance.

I think they should spend most of their time in their districts, not in Washington.

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:
I think they should not get paid any salary. Maybe a housing and transportation allowance.
[/quote]

Then you are ensuring aristocratic rule. Only the rich would go to Washington. Would you work for free?

[quote]LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
Zap Branigan wrote:
I think they should not get paid any salary. Maybe a housing and transportation allowance.

Then you are ensuring aristocratic rule. Only the rich would go to Washington. Would you work for free?
[/quote]

Most of our legislature is already rich.

Yes I would sacrifice a couple unpaid days a week to be a senator or a rep.

I also think the less time they spend in Washington the less access lobbyists would have.

[quote]LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
So what are they taking home now and what was the percentage?

How often do private citizens get raises? yearly? That’s about right.[/quote]

$150,000/year, plus ‘tips’.

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:
LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
Zap Branigan wrote:
I think they should not get paid any salary. Maybe a housing and transportation allowance.

Then you are ensuring aristocratic rule. Only the rich would go to Washington. Would you work for free?

Most of our legislature is already rich.

Yes I would sacrifice a couple unpaid days a week to be a senator or a rep.

I also think the less time they spend in Washington the less access lobbyists would have.

[/quote]

Because we all know lobbiests aren’t the kind of slime balls that would follow a Congressmen home…

[quote]Beowolf wrote:
Zap Branigan wrote:
LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
Zap Branigan wrote:
I think they should not get paid any salary. Maybe a housing and transportation allowance.

Then you are ensuring aristocratic rule. Only the rich would go to Washington. Would you work for free?

Most of our legislature is already rich.

Yes I would sacrifice a couple unpaid days a week to be a senator or a rep.

I also think the less time they spend in Washington the less access lobbyists would have.

Because we all know lobbiests aren’t the kind of slime balls that would follow a Congressmen home…
[/quote]

They would be too widespread for the lobbyists to be as effective.

senator russ feingold is well known to not take these self aggrandizing raises.

also, he is was the lone dissenting vote against the patriot act. probably, the only one who read the damn thing before voting for it.

f

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:
Yes I would sacrifice a couple unpaid days a week to be a senator or a rep.[/quote]

Oh, the public is clamoring for that, believe me.

Change the laws about lobbyists. That’s the intelligent solution, rather than scattering legislators across the country. You were probably joking.

[quote]Brad61 wrote:
Zap Branigan wrote:
Yes I would sacrifice a couple unpaid days a week to be a senator or a rep.

Oh, the public is clamoring for that, believe me.

[/quote]

I would be far better than anyone else in Washington.

You can change the rules all you want but you can never keep the lobbyists away unless you clear everyone out of Washington.

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:
You can change the rules all you want but you can never keep the lobbyists away unless you clear everyone out of Washington.[/quote]

That is just not true…

It would be incredibly difficult to keep lobbyists from unethically influencing politicians but it would be possible.

It likely would not happen but we can certainly improve on the current regulations.