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Wed Apr 9, 2014, 01:56 PM

Is it time to pay Congress more?

Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.) believes itís time for members of Congress to receive more compensation, but a House committee meeting Wednesday made clear that the time has not arrived.

Despite sympathetic comments from several members, the House Appropriations Committee rejected a proposal by Moran to create a $25-a-day housing stipend for members who maintain a primary residence more than 50 miles from the Capitol. The stipend would apply only to days Congress is in session and only to members who took it voluntarily.

Moran offered his amendment as the committee was passing the spending bill covering the Legislative Branch for the upcoming fiscal year, which bars paying a raise to Congress in 2015 for what would be the sixth straight year. Moran allowed for a voice vote so that his colleagues would not be put on the spot with a recorded vote.


http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/federal-eye/wp/2014/04/09/is-it-time-to-pay-congress-more/

I was wondering where this FB meme was coming from?



This was a bone headed move by Rep Moran, given where pay is at the moment. This is the kind of boneheaded maneuvers that will cost Dems because I can bet on this making the news everywhere. Hell, I cannot wait for FOX to take this apart with CNN as well.

37 replies, 720 views

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Arrow 37 replies Author Time Post
Reply Is it time to pay Congress more? (Original post)
nadinbrzezinski Apr 2014 OP
Glitterati Apr 2014 #1
LiberalFighter Apr 2014 #2
nadinbrzezinski Apr 2014 #3
Glitterati Apr 2014 #4
LiberalFighter Apr 2014 #6
Glitterati Apr 2014 #11
LiberalFighter Apr 2014 #18
Glitterati Apr 2014 #21
LiberalFighter Apr 2014 #22
Glitterati Apr 2014 #25
LiberalFighter Apr 2014 #33
Glitterati Apr 2014 #36
Tuesday Afternoon Apr 2014 #9
Hoyt Apr 2014 #27
Glitterati Apr 2014 #32
irisblue Apr 2014 #5
Tuesday Afternoon Apr 2014 #7
badtoworse Apr 2014 #8
Auntie Bush Apr 2014 #10
lumberjack_jeff Apr 2014 #12
LiberalFighter Apr 2014 #19
cherokeeprogressive Apr 2014 #13
nadinbrzezinski Apr 2014 #14
octoberlib Apr 2014 #15
City Lights Apr 2014 #16
socialist_n_TN Apr 2014 #17
demtenjeep Apr 2014 #20
Iggo Apr 2014 #23
L0oniX Apr 2014 #24
mikeysnot Apr 2014 #26
TBF Apr 2014 #28
Nye Bevan Apr 2014 #29
Nine Apr 2014 #30
Orrex Apr 2014 #31
closeupready Apr 2014 #34
NobodyHere Apr 2014 #35
jmowreader Apr 2014 #37

Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:10 PM

1. Hell NO!

Perhaps when they learn to work at least a 40 hour week, we can open the door to whether or not they earn their current pay check.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:10 PM

2. No!

If they want to change it there needs to be some other changes. Limit contributions made by any individual, business or corporation to political campaigns or entities including PACs. Require full transparency on all contributions in a timely manner. Prohibit travel funded by outside groups. Require full disclosure on all investments.

Reduce their salary. Provide a housing allowance for those that don't commute from their home state. Housing allowance should be based on whether it is solely for the individual or family. Or if they share with others in Congress. Allowance not to exceed what it would cost for a home/apartment with 2,000 sq ft and 2 car garage. If the housing allowance goes into paying a mortgage it will be taxable income. If it is rental it is tax exempt income.

For those using the Metro provide mileage from their D.C. area residence to nearest station and free Metro access. For those not using Metro provide just mileage from their D.C. area residence to the nearest Metro.

Provide per diem based on what they are doing. Maximum when they are in DC and have spent at least 6 hours at work (Congress). Provide lower per diem when they are back in their district. Maximum days with per diem each week limited to 5 days in the district. Maximum can be exceeded in DC if Congress is in session and there is activity scheduled.

The above is just a consideration.

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Response to LiberalFighter (Reply #2)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:11 PM

3. It is tin eared as I have seen

in an off year none would pay attention.

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Response to LiberalFighter (Reply #2)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:12 PM

4. There's a much easier, and less costly solution

Let them stay in their home state and vote electronically.

There's no reason for these people to congregate in one place anymore. Keep Congress for the State of the Union address only.

We can then cut their wages to what state lawmakers make, since they don't have all these added expenses.

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Response to Glitterati (Reply #4)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:18 PM

6. I would love to see that happen but

they need to be interacting with other members of Congress one on one.

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Response to LiberalFighter (Reply #6)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:23 PM

11. Why?

These people don't represent other members of Congress, they are SUPPOSED to represent the people who live in their district. What better way to represent those people than to live their daily lives right there in the community?

Jeez, think about how much money will be added to the economy when the K Street lobbyists all have to fly from state to state to deliver their payoffs to each representative in each district!!!!!!!

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Response to Glitterati (Reply #11)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 08:26 PM

18. Interaction with other members of Congress is necessary

to gauge where others stand on legislation.

It is no different with state legislators or local government councils.

All that would happen with voting from their district is less work.

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Response to LiberalFighter (Reply #18)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 02:02 AM

21. We DO have phones, you know.

And email and text messaging and many forms of communication.

There are plenty of ways to communicate other than face to face, especially when face to face is so horribly costly.

I'm sorry, but I do not believe face to face communication is necessary for Congress or anyone else. Hell, even corporations have teams in different countries which collaborate via skype and other meeting software.

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Response to Glitterati (Reply #21)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 08:33 AM

22. If those forms of communications are so great

then why is it that the dynamics of communication changes substantially when it is one on one as in as a loved one returning home from an extended stay?

You try having sex long distance or a meaningful conversation.

As for corporations then why don't they do it 100% of the time? The employees have their assigned duties and don't get to vote on matters. Corporations with boards still continue to meet face to face when making decisions.

And don't forget that they still need to conduct hearings on legislation as well as debate on them. That cannot be done effectively long distance.

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Response to LiberalFighter (Reply #22)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 10:00 AM

25. It DOES happen all the time in corporations

Especially when the design team is in the US and the programmers are in India, etc.

Sooooo, wait.......members need to meet face to face to have sex? Is that what you're saying? ROFL.

And, yes, hearings and debate need to happen, but I guarantee you that most legislation is debated via phone now. How is it you think Harry Reid and John Boehner know their vote count BEFORE the vote occurs?

Besides, as little as Congress WORKS these days, they sure as hell can do the little that does get done, via telephone.

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Response to Glitterati (Reply #25)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 04:11 PM

33. If you think it is such a great idea that will work

Make it happen with your state legislature.

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Response to LiberalFighter (Reply #33)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 04:25 PM

36. ROFL

Well, my state legislature meets, by law, only 40 days per year. I don't think an IN STATE legislature would garner the savings I'm talking about. Most certainly NOT my state.

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Response to Glitterati (Reply #4)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:20 PM

9. looking for the like/thumbsup button ...

<---- found it!

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Response to Glitterati (Reply #4)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 10:32 AM

27. Good idea. They can vote from home state, or in Washington if they need to interact face-to-face.

I think they will need to be in DC often, but electronic voting/interaction would help.

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Response to Hoyt (Reply #27)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 12:45 PM

32. Exactly

But the default mode should be electronic voting from their home state.

Hey, it's good enough for us lowly voters, it's damned good enough for all of Congress.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:13 PM

5. Congress is not underpaid, We The People are underserved

by ....morons....like that

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:19 PM

7. uhm ... no.No.NO!

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:19 PM

8. Nah!

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:22 PM

10. They take so many days off they should get a deduction...not a raise!

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:24 PM

12. Each state should own homes or condos in the capital.

It'd do the representatives good to live in public housing.

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Response to lumberjack_jeff (Reply #12)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 08:28 PM

19. That would work.

Then the congress critters couldn't complain about the cost of a second home. Since the congress critters wouldn't have to worry about that cost their salary could be reduced.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 02:32 PM

13. Nnnnnnope.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 07:16 PM

14. Afternoon kick

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 07:23 PM

15. They can have their raise if

we can get campaign finance reform(public funding of campaigns, shortening of the campaign season to 3 months etc) lobbying reform and a law requiring all voting machines to leave a paper trail.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 07:47 PM

16. Nope.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 08:03 PM

17. I don't think they need to make any more than the average pay.....

of the workers in their districts. AND they need to be subject to immediate recall. How do ya like those apples Rep. Moran?

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Apr 9, 2014, 08:48 PM

20. it did make the rounds-last week

I believe many people were upset over it

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 09:09 AM

23. Nah, let's go the other way.

Treat them like college athletes.

Give 'em free room and board, transportation to and from events, and bring down the hammer if we catch them taking money from the "boosters."

What's that you say? That sounds like a real stupid system? Hmm...I guess you're right.

Instead, I'll take campaign finance reform in exchange for a raise for congress critters. (I still like that "bring down the hammer" idea, though.)

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 09:25 AM

24. Not enough corporate money flowing in Mr "Moran"?

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 10:21 AM

26. Pay them minimum wage

at an hourly rate... based on how much they "work" the nation would save lots of money...

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 10:34 AM

28. I think they should be part-time

minimum wage workers like their constituents - with no benefits. They can buy Obamacare on the exchange like everyone else. And if we don't like them we could fire them and hire someone younger, or outsource their job to India.

And then MAYBE they would get a clue as to what it's like to be a worker in the USA presently.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 10:36 AM

29. I would give them a generous pay raise under one condition.

Their salary is reduced by one dollar for every dollar of outside income or investment income they earn in any given year.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 11:07 AM

30. I'm a lot more concerned about the money that DOESN'T come from taxpayers.

Congressmen talking about salary increases is good for getting the drunk at the end of the bar riled up, but it's not really what we should be worried about. A congressional pay raise is not going to have an appreciable effect on the budget. It's not going to make congressmen appreciably wealthier and therefore more out-of-touch with the common man. It's not a threat to democracy in the way that corporate money being funneled to politicians is. I think there's something to the suggestion that increasing pay will make it easier for people of less means to be members of congress.

But I do agree with OP that there's always political harm in being the party that proposes the pay raise. That IS something to worry about.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 11:08 AM

31. They get most of their pay from lobbiests anyway

So let's cut their pay to $1 per year.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 04:20 PM

34. You guys cash in when you're voted out, in the revolving door y'all maintain

with industries you're supposed to be regulating. So, you can forget about a raise. Jerk.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 04:22 PM

35. When the median american salary starts going up...

I might be more sympathetic to poor old Jimmy's plea.


Also how much you wanna bet that the Republicans use this quote during election season ads. Talk about an unforced error.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Apr 10, 2014, 05:49 PM

37. If we could flush out the do-nothings we have now, it would be a different story

Everyone here should be able to agree we're not paying Elizabeth Warren or Al Franken enough, and the teabaggers should be charged admission.

This could be refreshing...

1. Change the House to a 4-year term coinciding with a presidential term. Campaigns done strictly with public financing - all campaign contributions disallowed. Offer $500,000 per year to attract high-performance individuals, and the only additional sources of income allowed will be disbursements from businesses they owned before taking office and dividends from securities owned before taking office. Honorariums from speeches will be turned in to the Treasury for disbursement to their districts - if Congressman Smith feels his district's schools are being screwed out of money he can hit the rubber-chicken circuit and help 'em out.

2. Senators must be 60 years old on the day they file for their first election. Once in office, they don't have to run again; they can keep the job under good behavior until they decide to retire. (Which is what happens now, since the reelection rate is very high.) The pay rate is $600,000 per year.

3. Solve the problem of gerrymandering by allowing everyone who lives in a state with more than one representative to vote for two representatives: theirs, and the one in the next district over. Don't tell me this would make campaigning too hard; the state of Montana is 550 miles wide and it has one congressman. If one Montanan can handle that whole state, a New Jersey congressman can campaign halfway across his neighboring district.

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