Reminder: During a Government Shutdown, Military Members Don't Get Paid But Politicians Do

Posted: Jan 19, 2018 2:10 PM

Democrats on Capitol Hill continue to put the needs of illegal immigrants over Americans Friday afternoon as the likelihood of a government shutdown increases by the hour. 

During an emergency White House briefing Friday morning, Budget Director Mick Mulvaney explained what will happen if Democrats don't agree to a deal by midnight. 

"The military will still go to work.  They will not get paid.  The border will still be patrolled.  They will not get paid.  Folks will still be fighting the fires out West.  They will not get paid.  The parks will be open.  People won't get paid," Mulvaney said. "Parks will be open this time, and they weren't before.  Let's go down the list.  The parks will be open."

"The way it works is that the parks are open, but the -- especially if the services are provided by third parties, but things like the trash won't get picked up.  Fannie and Freddie will be open.  The Post Office will be open. The TSA will be open," he continued. "But again, all of these people will be working for nothing, which is simply not fair."

But guess who will still be getting their paychecks on time? Members of Congress.

Here's an explanation about why. 

The government shutdown only affects agencies and employees that are funded through annual appropriations. But that doesn't apply to members of Congress. Salaries for members of the House and Senate are written into permanent law. (Members in both chambers currently make $174,000 a year.) That's why politicians get paid even in the event that Congress can't agree on a bill to fund the government.

Congress has the ability to change the law so their paychecks are frozen in a shutdown, but they've failed to do that too. So, here we are.