I’ve never been a big fan of automatic pay raises (private and public sector) or, for that matter, cost of living adjustments (COLA’s).
The fact that Congress is on track (unless Pelosi calls a special session to prevent such) to get a pay increase this year is an affront of Marie Antoinette proportions. This just in:
As Americans across the country grapple with one of the worst financial crises since the Great Depression, members of Congress quietly are getting a pay raise.
Each lawmaker’s annual salary is due for a $4,700 cost-of-living increase starting in January, which will amount to a cost to taxpayers of $2.5 million in 2009, infuriating watchdog groups.
In a year of financial trouble for such noteworthy causes as the United Way and The Salvation Army, both institutions known for caring for the “least of us”, our Congress chose not to turn off the automatic pay increase switch they have in place before they left Washington last week.
Much has been made of Congress’ low approval rating but as commenters have noted here before, most voters think poorly of every Congressman except their own.
If ever there was a time to call your own congressman it is now. Here’s a suggestion: ask your congressman to either refuse the pay increase or donate the $4,700 to a worthy local charity (hint: perhaps one that helps the jobless, feed the homeless, heal the sick).