• February 24, 2017

Reader says members of Congress should have to return their salaries

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Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2014 4:30 am

To the Editor:

I, as well as many people I know, have been thoroughly disgusted by the silly antics and lack of constructive achievement by the Congress for at least the last two or three years.

Perhaps it would send a signal to those “lawmakers” if there were an understanding that, unless they showed a willingness to work together on the people’s business instead of their own narrow agenda and to stop being so obstructionist, they would not be paid during the following year.

Actually, at the present, I think that many of the members of Congress should have to return to the Treasury the salaries they have received over the last three years. They certainly did not earn that money.

Ben Liles, Salado

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Welcome to the discussion.


  • Baylor posted at 2:21 pm on Thu, Feb 27, 2014.

    Baylor Posts: 197

    I believe if congress allowed themselves to be completely transparent and allowed someone to peel back every benefit and payoff that has come their way, it would prove everyone of them are crooked. I will never vote for an incumbent.

  • wilcfry posted at 10:54 am on Thu, Feb 27, 2014.

    wilcfry Posts: 93

    Yes they do. From the Senate website's FAQ:

    "Members of Congress are eligible for a pension at age 62 if they have completed at least five years of service. They are eligible for a pension at age 50 if they have completed 20 years of service, or at any age after completing 25 years of service. The amount of the pension depends on years of service and the average of the highest three years of salary. By law, the starting amount of a member’s retirement annuity may not exceed 80 percent of his or her final salary."

    :-) So vote them out soon.

  • barbie500 posted at 11:47 am on Mon, Feb 24, 2014.

    barbie500 Posts: 162

    Don't they get a retirement after being in Congress?

  • wilcfry posted at 9:01 am on Mon, Feb 24, 2014.

    wilcfry Posts: 93

    While I understand the frustration that might lead to such a suggestion, the suggestion itself is a tad nonsensical, isn't it?

    First, most members of congress (both House and Senate) don't need those salaries anyway; it's a kind of "bonus" for them on top of the significant wealth they already possessed. (There are exceptions of course.)

    Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, who gets to sit in judgment of whether they're "doing their jobs" or not? And who gets to choose that person? Would that person have a perspective from the left, who would deny the salaries only to those they perceive as obstructionist Republicans? Or would that person have a perspective from the right, and deny salaries to the Democrats who they perceive to be causing the issues?

    Thirdly, though it sounds lame any time someone says it, we actually do have the power to "fire" them every few years (two for the House, six for the Senate). If the majority of citizens are convinced Sen. A or Rep. B is worthless, they'll replace him or her.

    While the left is convinced Mr. Cruz is part of the problem, Texans will re-elect him, won't we? And while the right is convinced Mrs. Pelosi is part of the problem, San Franciscans will likely send her back to the House.

  • Roody2 posted at 10:11 am on Sun, Feb 23, 2014.

    Roody2 Posts: 846

    I guess you haven't heard... The president doesn't need Congress anymore. He has "a pen and a phone."