The House approved a bill to rescind the executive order President Obama signed last week that ended the pay freeze on federal employees, which meant that some federal workers would be getting a raise—including members of Congress. A number of lawmakers spoke out about the absurdity of the pay increase and timing of the move. Rep. Michele Bachmann said in a statement, “This executive order was not requested by Congress and we should reject it. We have a spending problem in our country and we should be looking for areas to cut spending. At a time when families across the country are cutting back we should not increase government spending and add to the debt burden by giving members of Congress a pay raise.”
GOP Rep. Darrell Issa’s office issued a statement:
On a bi-partisan vote of 287-129 the House of Representatives approved H.R. 6726, a bill to overturn the President’s executive order that gave an across the board pay hike to Members of Congress and federal bureaucrats. The President’s executive order will cost taxpayers $11 billion over the next 10 years. The bill was introduced by Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick, R-Pa. House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., led debate on the House Floor.
“The President, the Senate Majority, and the House Minority have not been able to agree to even the most meager spending cuts,” Issa said in the statement. “Yet the President’s executive order gives all members of Congress a salary hike on top of the $174,000 a year we already earn.”
The President’s executive order gave an across the board salary hike to white collar federal employees, whose average compensation exceeds $100,000. In January 2012, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) issued a study which found that total compensation for federal employees was 16% greater than comparable private sector employees.
“The President’s across the board pay increase for white collar workers is not necessary to retain talented employees and just wastes taxpayer money,” Issa continued. “Federal employees have continued to receive promotions and within-grade pay increases over the past few years of the supposed ‘pay freeze,’ and voluntary separations from the federal government are near all-time lows.”
Even though the bill passed that doesn’t change the fact that 129 members apparently feel they deserve a pay increase. Unbelievable.