April 23, 2010

House passes Feingold 'no raises' bill

 Update, April 27: Today, by a 402-15 vote, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill identical to the one Sen. Russ Feingold introduced in the Senate to prevent members of Congress from receiving a raise next year.  After the Senate passed his bill, Feingold led a bipartisan group of 21 senators in writing to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi urging her take up and pass an identical bill introduced by Rep. Harry Mitchell, D-AZ, and Rep. Jim Matheson, D-UT.

“I am very pleased that the House has passed a bill to stop the congressional pay raise for next year, just days after the Senate passed my legislation to do the same,” Feingold said. “With so many Americans still looking for jobs, the last thing Congress should do is give itself a taxpayer-funded raise. This is important progress, but there’s still more to do. The law still allows members of Congress to get an automatic pay raise without lifting a finger. I will continue working to end this back-door pay raise system once and for all.”

Rep. Paul Ryan, R-WI, 1st District, voted with the majority.

Original post:
Senate rejects pay raise, thanks to Feingold

We don't want no steenkin' pay raise!

That's the message from the U.S. Senate, which Thursday passed legislation by Sen. Russ Feingold that would cancel the automatic pay raise members of Congress would receive next year.

Congressmen and Senators already earn $174,000 a year (leaders get more), so the rejection of a $1,600 raise is largely symbolic to average Joes. Congress had already enacted legislation ensuring there would be no raise this year. The Senate approved Feingold's bill unanimously; the House is expected to go along.

For Feingold himself, the measure is totally symbolic, because of a 1992 pledge he made when he first ran for the Senate -- a pledge to accept no pay raises during his term in office. Feingold returns to the U.S. Treasury any pay above the level in effect each time he's elected.

“Members of Congress have a lot of perks, but the one that stands out is their ability to raise their own pay,” Feingold said. “Not many Americans have the power to give themselves a raise whenever they want, no matter how they are performing. Yet Congress has set up a system whereby every year members automatically get a pay increase without having to lift a finger.

"I refuse to be a part of that system, and I will continue to work to permanently end it. But in the meantime, Congress should at least give up its raise for next year. With so many Americans looking for jobs, and trying to figure out how to pay their bills, now is no time to give ourselves a taxpayer-funded pay raise.”

Feingold has introduced legislation to end the automatic pay raise system. It went through the Senate last year, but the House of Representatives has not acted on it yet.The measure would save $80 million over ten years, Feingold said.


  1. This is the only thing I have ever agreed with Feingold.

  2. The Translator4/23/2010 11:59 AM

    What is $1600 to a group of millionaires. The votes Russ has made in the senate has cost the average citizen much more then this raise would.

  3. Russ is a great senator. He is with the people. If Bush and Congress would have followed Feingold, we wouldn't be in this stupid war that is costing us beyond control.Where was Ryan's vote against the war when he keeps talking about our economy?

  4. Russ is a lousy senator. He supports every liberal or socialist program that comes down the shoot. This is nothing but a political campaigning flash to throw in the voter's faces to take their minds off all the detrimental left wing legislation and tax increases he's voted in favor of. Just another example Obama-style politics: show them what the right hand is doing so they don't pay any attention to the left hand.

  5. Check Feingold's record--zero $$ for Wisconsin! So this little show is for election purposes only!

  6. Tim the Shrubber4/26/2010 8:39 AM

    " This is nothing but a political campaigning flash ..."

    Yep. All show, little substance.

  7. Blah blah blah ... more political blah blah blah.

  8. I think it is time for Russ to leave wisconsin. Hey Russ if you are reading this, we do not like you, so please leave and do not come back. maybe you could move in with the obamas.

  9. Who were the 15 Reps. who voted for the bill?

  10. Let me correct my last question.
    Who were the 15 Reps. who voted against the bill?

  11. Here' the Roll Call. Knock yourself out.