Meager Income

Pay Off Debt, Retire Comfortably on Meager Income, Win the Lottery, Not Necessarily in that Order

Denial in Congress

Posted on | October 9, 2013 | No Comments

Day 8 of the government shutdown.  Congress is still getting paid yet thousands of Federal workers have been forced to stay home.  There is a chance that the workers will get paid during the government shutdown but it will be retroactively.  It sounds a little like a forced vacation.  I’ve been reading a lot of complaints on facebook from furloughed workers and some seem to have forgotten how fortunate they are to have jobs given the state of the current economy.  There are plenty of people of still looking for work that would gladly trade places with them.

House speaker John Boehner says they don’t have enough votes in the house to pass a clean continuing resolution (CR) bill to allow the government to continue to provide services.  But he refuses to attempt a vote fearing that it might get passed.  Initially, a small faction of the GOP wanted to starve health care insurance reform but now they just want something in return: “We’re not going to be disrespected,” Rep. Marlin Stutzman (R-Ind.) told The Washington Examiner. “We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is.”  They don’t seem to understand how their actions can negatively affect ordinary people’s lives.

With the US also nearing the debt ceiling limit set by Congress the budget impasse will no doubt impact debt-ceiling negotiations as well.  Meanwhile, a trend is occurring where members of Congress are pledging to give their salaries earned during the government shutdown to various charities.  Their justification is that their constituents are being impacted so they should do the same.  I applaud this thinking.  However, if they are truly concerned about the debt ceiling why not give it back to the treasury to pay down the debt?  From the long list of Congressmen and Congresswomen pledging to give their money away only a handful are promising to donate their salary to the Treasury.

Kudos to these Senators and Representatives:

Sen. Christopher Coons (D-Del.): A spokesman said Tuesday that the senator is “going to send the Treasury a check for the salary he is paid during the shutdown.”

Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-Ga.): He is declining compensation during the shutdown “and will contribute those wages to the U.S. Treasury for debt reduction,” a spokeswoman said.

*Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.): The senator first told a Wyoming reporter on Monday that he will return his earnings to the U.S. Treasury.

I especially admire Representative DelBene’s commitment to return 8.2.% to the treasury during sequestration!

Rep. Suzan DelBene (D-Wash): “For as long as this unnecessary shutdown occurs, hundreds of thousands of public servants will be working without pay,” she said in a statement Tuesday. “When sequestration began earlier this year, I returned 8.2% of my salary back to the Treasury, and for the duration of this shutdown, I will return the remainder of my personal salary as well.”

This representative finally did the right thing:

Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.): A spokesman says he has begun returning compensation earned during the shutdown to the U.S. Treasury. A wealthy entrepreneur, he donated his entire salary to charity until this year, when he began returning his pay to the Treasury to pay down the debt.

*I’m not sure if the quote is proper.  It seems to indicate that he might have changed his mind and maybe doesn’t belong on this list?

The full list can be found here.


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