Las Vegas Sun

May 29, 2015

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Letter to the editor:

$400 a day is nothing to sneeze at

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Where’s the justice? Speaking in round numbers, it’s my understanding that our elected representatives in Washington earn roughly $170,000 per year plus benefits. Having recently released their 2013 calendar, I see they’ve scheduled themselves to be in session for less than 125 days. Although I’m no mathematician, this amounts to a daily wage of about $1,400.

Bearing in mind that the current do-nothing House has passed around 80 bills this year (over 30 of them dedicated to dismantling health care reform), none of which had anything to do with job creation, I feel they have been grossly overpaid.

As we approach the “fiscal cliff,” Republicans are demanding major spending cuts directly aimed at the poor and middle class while refusing to consider any increase in the tax rates for the rich. I find their priorities to be a little skewed.

Perhaps rather than concentrating on major reductions to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, Congress should consider how little they’ve given us, their employers, in return for our investment in them. Even as they consider pay cuts and concessions from other federal employers, I suggest they look at conceding possibly $1,000 per day from their own salaries. After all, $400 a day is higher than the average, let alone the minimum, wage.

That $1,000 cut would help reduce the deficit from the House alone by millions of dollars in 2013.

Since Speaker John Boehner wants everything on the table, I suggest he consider adding congressional pay cuts into the mix.

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