Senior Democrats are pushing for a pay raise for those who deserve it most – Members of Congress.
House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) raised the issue at Tuesday’s Democratic Caucus meeting and has said he plans to ask Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) to give members a pay raise.
Members of Congress already earn $174,000 a year – far greater than the $47,230 that the average US worker earns a year. In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Congressmen earn more than the average lawyer ($133,470), Dentist ($170,940), Engineer ($93,630), and ‘Top Executives’ ($122,060).
Congressional salary has been frozen since 2009 because of tough economic conditions and rising federal deficits. However, Hoyer believes that if Congressional pay is not raised it will mean that “the only people who can serve are the rich.”
He is not alone in this view. Congressman Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.) recently argued “we aren’t being paid properly,” during consideration of FY 2016 Legislative Branch spending levels.
Fortunately for taxpayers, sanity prevailed and the Republican majority again voted against giving themselves a pay raise.