You make 4,000 a year and can’t afford an apartment or room to sleep in, who are you?
Congressional Approved Bed
A United States Congressman
First lets look at job benefits that come with being elected to congress.
The lowest paid Congressman makes 4,000 per year. Those in leadership roles make more. They enjoy good benefits and conditions of employeement. They can retire on a full pension at fifty years of age with 20 years of service. 20 years of service means being re-elected 10 times. Thats not impossible as many reach that goal such as our Congressman Bob Goodlatte and some even double those years such as Charles Rangall of New York.
The requiement of 20 years of service for full retirement explains the lack of interest in term limits. After 5 years of service a congressman receives a reduced pension. Members are eligible at any age after completing 25 years of service or after they reach the age of 62. The amount of a congressperson’s pension depends on the years of service and the average of the highest 3 years of his or her salary, but it can’t exceed 80 percent of final salary.
Lets use the lowest salary for 2009 and not increase it for the next 20 years and compute a pension payment. The annual retirement benefit would be .8 X 4,000 or 9,200 per year. That is figured on the minimum level of pay. In real life it would be figured on the three highest years’ salary. Congressmen vote on heir own salary level and raise the amount regularly reguardless of the state of the economy in the country so over the years that 2009 salary level of 4,000 would rise. In 1989, Congress passed an amendment allowing for automatic raises, unless lawmakers specifically voted to reject it. The fiscal year 2004 Transportation and Treasury Department Appropriations bill included Congress’ 2.2 percent pay raise. Congress can hide a pay raise almost anywhere and no longer has to vote on it in the dead of night to get it passed as its passage is automatic unless specifically rejected.
Congressmen can fly around in government luxury jets from a fleet of 24 jets our government keeps for them and other government personnel. Congress has the only job in the country that can set their own salary without regard to performance, profit, or economic climate. With a Trillion dollar deficit, the cost of the war in Iraq and Afganstan, and a stagnant economy, Congress should be curbing spending, not slipping in another pay raise. The 108th congress raised their base by ,400. Since 1990, congressional pay has increased from ,400 to 4,700 in 2003. That was a ,300 jump, a 57 percent increase in only 13 years. In 2009 pay wen up to #174,000 base. Thats another ,000 in increases since 2003.
From 1789 to 1815, members of Congress received only a per diem (daily payment) of .00 while in session. Members began receiving an annual salary in 1815, when they were paid ,500 per year.
House and Senate Leaders are paid more than rank-and-file members.
Both the Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid, and Minority Leader, Mitch McConnell, get 3,400. The Speaker of the House, John Boehner, gets 3,500 and a jet airplane. President Obama makes 0,000 per year plus expenses. A cost-of-living-adjustment (COLA) increase takes effect annually unless Congress votes to not accept it.
Now I’ve told you this so I can tell you something else and that is over 30 of these Congressmen can’t afford or won’t pay ,200 to ,800 a month for a place to live and are sleeping in their offices. Congress is getting to be much like a frat house.
Among the members sleeping in their offices, rather than paying for their own apartments or other housing, are 8th District Rep. Joe Walsh, a McHenry Republican, and 5th District Rep. Mike Quigley, 3rd District Rep. Dan Lipinski and 1st District Rep. Bobby Rush, all Chicago Democrats. 33 members of Congress (7 Democrats and 26 Republicans. all men) sleep in their Congressional offices.
These 33 pennypinchers hail from as close to Washington as Delaware and Virginia, and from as far away as California and
Arizona. Five of them represent Arizona districts, reportedly including freshman Rep. Ben Quayle, son of former Vice
President Dan Quayle.
Ben Quayle, writer of articles for a porno website and man who would go to Washington and knock the hell out of the place is sleeping in his office on a cot. Ben is a lot like his old man Dan Quayle. He can’t spell potato either.
Most House members commute from their districts, many of them have the burden of assuming both a house payment and monthly
rent — or in some cases two house payments. They make 4,000 annually, but most maintain their primary residences and
families in their home districts and travel back and forth throughout the year. Some save by sharing spartan apartments near the Capitol. All are aware of the challenges that go with the job when they run for it.
No one knows how many members have their offices do double duty as residences. Neither the Committee on House Administration nor the Office of the House Chief Administrative Officer keeps a list. Nor does the sergeant-at-arms’ office, which might be interested in knowing which offices contained sleeping members if there were an emergency on the Hill.
Outgoing Rep. Tim Walberg (R-Mich.) told the Gannett News Service in 2007 that, based on what he saw in the health club each morning, as many as 40 other congressmen sleep in their offices. Members and their office staffers aren’t so keen on giving out names, and no offices would confess to knowing who or how many are asleep near their desks.
Fred Beuttler, the deputy historian of the House, said that, in the 1980s, Democratic leaders advised members to move their families to Washington with them.
Amherst Virginia Democrats
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich of Georgia advised Republicans to do the opposite to minimize their footprint in favor of more time spent in their districts. Newt was deeply involved in an exta marital affair at the time so his advice served his interest well.
A number of Republican members are known to sleep in their offices. Among them: Reps. Jeff Flake of Arizona, Pete Hoekstra of Michigan, Denny Rehberg of Montana, Lee Terry of Nebraska and John Sullivan of Oklahoma.
After decamping from a room in a nearby town house, Sullivan sleeps on a mattress in his office. Terry recently graduated
from a succession of air mattresses to a rollaway bed, an aide said.
Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.) used to sleep in his office. But spokesman Chris Crawford said Kingston eventually moved out
for the benefit of staffers who got tired of finding containers of ramen noodles around.
Utah congressman Jason Chaffetz, 41, was sworn in as a member of the 112th Congress. The Republican freshman has since set up his humble sleeping quarters in his office – in a bid to maximise work and save the odd dollar or two. He estimates that in turning his back on a hotel while in Washington he is able to save around 1,500 US dollars a month. Mr Chaffetz, believes his actions should serve as an example to others finding themselves needing to cut back during the recession. Can you say nut job boys and girls?
This is a homeless person and not someone practicing to be a Congressman. He has no other place to sleep and he is not saving 00 a month by sleeping in the box. He probably draws no salary from the government.
ACVDN Bottom Line: If members didn’t want to find housing in Washington, they shouldn’t have run for Congress in the first
If they can’t live on the minimum pay of 4,000 a year they are unfit to handle our nations business. I can think of no other occupation that suffers from such a high opinion of themselves and such a low level of dignity as a politician. Get a life fellas.
John Boehner Can’t Do His Job
House Speaker John Boehner is violating his own small-government principles by meddling in local affairs, D.C. voting rights activists said Thursday morning.
About two dozen protesters held a tea party-style demonstration outside Boehner’s Capitol Hill home Thursday morning. They wore three-cornered, colonial-style hats and chanted, “Don’t tread on D.C.”
House Republicans have proposed a spending resolution that would prohibit the city from using local funds for a needle exchange program and abortions for low-income women.
Boehner shouldn’t be telling residents of a city without full voting rights in the House how to spend their money, DC Vote Executive Director Ilir Zherka said.
“Of course, the Speaker is the Speaker of the House of Representatives because of the Tea Party, and one of the basic tenets of the Tea Party … is that the central federal government should do the things that it is elected to do, and not intrude on the rights of local governments,” Zherka said.
Instead, Zherka said, Boehner and the GOP have tried to federalize D.C. policies.
When they attempted to deliver a letter and a tea bag to Boehner’s door, protesters were ordered off the property.
Boehner did not speak to protesters when he left his home, organizers of the protest said.
Boehner Loses Vote to Tea Party and Democrats
Amherst County Virginia Democratic News
In a career-defining victory for a young lawmaker, sophomore Rep. Tom Rooney (R-Fla.) corralled conservative freshmen to beat his own party leadership this week, spearheading a pivotal House vote to cut 0 million for a competitive engine for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.
It has been one of Washington’s most intensively lobbied issues in years, and big cuts to defense are among the rarest accomplishments on Capitol Hill, since every single line in the budget has ferocious, deep-pocketed defenders.
Top House leaders – Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and House Armed Services
Chairman Howard P. “Buck” McKeon (R-Calif.) – were arrayed in favor of preserving the program, in part because the alternative engine is built by GE, a big employer in Boehner’s home state of Ohio.
The vote on the amendment to scuttle the program was 233-198, with 47 Republican freshmen tipping the balance.
The cut was victory for the Obama administration, which like the last Bush administration, sought to scuttle the engine.
Amherst Virginia Democrats
And it was a loss for Republican House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, which has many of the GE engine jobs.
The vote was also seen as a test for how the influx of new budget-minded Republicans would behave, and whether an alliance
with Democrats could help at long last defeat the engine.
The tally on the amendment to strip the engine funds from the continuing spending resolution for this fiscal 2011 year was
233-198. The House still must approve the CR, which it is expected to do yet this week, and send it onto the Senate for
While no single vote can ever be counted on to doom a Pentagon weapons program, Wednesday’s House action appears to be
pivotal, since the Senate for the last two years has allowed the House to take the lead on the engine.
Still, GE noted that Congress has continued to support its engine for the last 15 years and pledged to move ahead. “We will continue to press the case for competition as the FY11 budget is finalized and as the FY12 budget debate continues,” said GE Aviation spokesman Rick Kennedy said in a statement.
The GE engine program has enjoyed congressional support for years, riding on a web of parochial ties and a strong endorsement from the House Armed Services Committee, which firmly believes that the 0 billion engine program is so large the Pentagon needs a competitor to Pratt and Whitney to control cost and quality.
The Pentagon has rejected that argument since the last Bush administration, trying repeatedly to end funding for the engine. And this time, Defense Secretary Robert Gates used the full force of his office and reputation, making ending the engine in this fiscal year a major feature of his budget presentation for the new 2012 fiscal year budget and in some circles a “manhood” issue.
Gates, who was on Capitol Hill Wednesday to testify before the House Armed Services Committee, reiterated his opposition.
And Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Michael Mullen weighed in as well, declaring flatly: “We cannot afford to buy the second engine.”
ACVDN Bottom Line: Look for the Republicans with the assistence of John Boehner and Eric Canter to cram this into some bill and find a way to continue this useless program. Republicans are about graft and corruption and pork and they will not be stopped easily. The tea party has a battle on their hands if they are intending to make the Republicans straighten up and fly right. They are begining to understand who the enemy is and thats a good thing.
Amherst County Virginia Democratic News