Rep. Lee Terry (R-NE) is fighting the good fight for higher wages…for himself. On Monday, Terry’s Democratic challenger, State Senator Brad Ashford proposed that Congressional salaries by cut 10 percent. Ashford promised that, if elected, he would take a cut himself.
“To leave Congress in the state that it was left last week, in my view, is not serving the needs of the people,” Ashford said on Monday. “I’m proposing we do cut our salary by 10 percent.”
However, Terry, who refused to give up his salary during the shutdown because “I’ve got a nice house and a kid in college” disagreed with the notion that he makes too much.Instead, Terry complained that his $174,000 yearly salary, for which he does not work full-time, is already frozen. The last time Congress voted for a pay raise was in 2009, when they received a generous $4,700 annual increase in pay.
“What he’s not telling you is that Congress hasn’t had a cost of living increase since 2008, when I led the charge for a freeze,” Terry told KMTV. “I give at least that amount [10 percent] to charities already, so I don’t have to do a campaign trick like that. I’m already giving back to the community from my salary.”
Congress has only 97 scheduled work days in 2014, meaning that Terry makes roughly $1794 per day if he works every day scheduled. In 2013, Terry joined Republicans in unanimously voting down a minimum wage increase for the “little people.”
Isn’t it about time we end this culture of dependency on the government that Republicans repeatedly reference? Perhaps it’s time that we simply pay Congress minimum wage until everyone in our nation receives a living wage. We like that solution better.