Like Congress Really Deserves a Pay Raise!

So, Democrats believe they deserve a pay raise! One Republican is trying to stop it. We'll have to see who really matters ... politicians or the citizens at this time with bailouts and budget shortfalls and increasing national debt.

The automatic increase of pay without Congressional vote is another theft from the American public purse.

Senate Democrats Try to Thwart GOP Move on Pay


Published: March 10, 2009

Filed at 3:52 p.m. ET

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Senate Democrats are trying to thwart Republican efforts to force a vote on congressional pay raises on a must-pass spending.

Louisiana Republican Sen. David Vitter's amendment to the stopgap legislation would ban congressional pay raises unless lawmakers vote to increase their own salaries. He argues that these automatic salary boosts are inappropriate while the nation is mired in a recession.

Lawmakers aren't arguing publicly with that reasoning. But Democrats want to bring up the proposal as a separate bill even though its prospects would be dim. Critics say that's really an effort to kill the proposal.

Many lawmakers are loathe to go on the record in favor of raising their own salaries during the economic crisis.

Josie06 Josie06
56-60, F
8 Responses Mar 10, 2009

Lushesb, i realize that. <br />
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i was speaking about the original intentions ... yes they have grown to mean much more to more people. <br />
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And yes, i've had dealing with the various treaties between the US and other countries where we allow the monies to be sent there. <br />
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It is ashame how the system has been politicized to become so much to so many ... totally not what was originally intended.

Hate to have to inform you Josie but it's not only elderly Americans that are living off of SS.<br />
I worked for a jewish physician in private practice 3 years ago, and about 80% of his patients were jewish Russian immigrants and every single one of them was collecting SS and on Medicare, and Medicaid. Because we accepted Medicaid we were required by state law, to pay for and provide language interpreters for them (because not speaking english is now a disability) and one of the Russian interpreters that I was friendly with imparted the following information: she told me that when they come here, they live with a relative and collect general assistance and have Medicaid for 5 years and once they have been in the country for 5 years, they become eligible for SS disability and Medicare. <br />
And they never are required to become citizens, never are required to contribute so much as a single *dime* into the system. <br />
And it isn't just Russian immigrants either. <br />
I have stories of how our Mediacare dollars are spent that would make you physically ill. <br />
It's so sad.

SS started as insurance for Americans. It is a shame it it now the sole means of support for the elderly.<br />
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It is also a shame that our Congress, a Republican one under former President Reagan, decided to use the fund for General Revenue too. Bad idea that many will pay for in the near future.

LilAnnie, you are very very lucky.<br />
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Most of us do not a COLA or even a base pay raise annually and many only get a increase in health benefit premiums they must pay for health insurance.

Actually, yes, Josie. You'll be glad to hear we did and always do get a COLA raise, my husband belongs to a very strong union.

Oh, and by the way. Congress is under the $250,000 tax the rich too with the net effect of credits and allowances and since none of their perks or junkets are taxable to them.

So, other than that i'm guessing you both believe that our elected officials do such a good job in Washington DC for the citizens of this country that they do deserve automatic cost of living raises (COLA) every year. For 2008 it was 2.3% for 2009 it is 2.8%.<br />
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Did anyone else get a COLA last year or this year?<br />
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Everyone can see they are underpaid for the "WORK" they do. And they probably can't hold down an honest job any way.<br />
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See:<br />
Under the terms of Public Law 101-194, the Government Ethics Reform Act of 1989, lawmakers receive an annual adjustment in pay [a cost of living adjustment or COLA] equal to the change in the government's Employment Cost Index for the fourth quarter of the prior calendar year versus the year before that (this constitutes a one-year time lag between when the pay raise is measured and when it actually takes effect). An automatic provision is made for this pay hike each year, and is self-implementing without any specific vote by Congress (i.e., passage of the overall Treasury appropriations bill enables the raise to occur). However, Members of Congress can, by majority vote, block the pay increase from taking place. This occurred for salary hikes slated for 1994-1997 and for 1999.<br />
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P.L. 101-194 also created a new Citizens Commission on Public Service and Compensation to make quadrennial recommendations on salaries for top-level federal officials. However, according to an October 31, 2005 Congressional Service Report, this Commission has not convened.<br />
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Members of Congress have linked their own pay increase to that of thousands of other high-ranking personnel in the federal government, including cabinet agency heads and judges. For further details on this phenomenon, read NTUF Policy Paper 138, Something Congress Can Be Thankful For: A Pay Raise in the New Year.<br />
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House and Senate Salaries for members<br />
House Senate<br />
Salary Salary <br />
January 2007 (3) $165,200 $165,200 <br />
January 2008 (4) $169,300 $169,300 <br />
January 2009 (5) $174,000 $174,000 <br />
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Salaries 2009 2008<br />
Speaker of the House $223,500 $217,400 <br />
Majority/minority leaders $193,400 $188,100 (House & Senate)<br />

Liberals? I thought, in USA is only 2 partys - Democrats and Republicans.