Automatic Pay Raises Must End

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Posted: Mar 26, 2009 3:59 PM
Guest blog post by Rep. Gresham Barrett (R.-S.C.)

This past year, I gave my bonus to Anderson Interfaith Ministries, a local faith-based organization that provides assistance to those in need. I did this because I don’t think we earned the additional money, and I will continue to give any additional pay increases to local charities until the automatic pay raise provision is stopped.

Ending automatic pay raises is something I’ve being working hard to do. Last year I introduced legislation to stop automatic congressional pay raises, but House Democrats blocked my proposal. So, I reintroduced an updated version of the bill again this year, but the House Democrats have refused to bring my bill to the floor for a vote. This is unfortunate, especially since the Senate unanimously passed a similar piece of legislation on March 17th.

Taking that a step further, I think it only makes sense that in a year when there is no projection for a balanced budget and when Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security are all projected to go broke, that members of Congress should automatically be paid one dollar. These massive government programs are unsustainable yet Congress has failed to act and failed to offer a real solution, leaving behind what everyone agrees is a disaster for others to clean up.