Though federal employees won’t get a paycheck during the governmment shutdown, members of Congress will — unless they specify otherwise.
Ten Democratic senators on Friday introduced a bill that would withhold pay for members of Congress during the government shutdown.
The legislation comes from Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), along with Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Ranking Member Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Bob Casey (D-Pa.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), Joe Manchin (D-W. Va.), Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) and Jon Tester (D-Mont.).
“It’s wrong that members of Congress would still get paid in the event of a shutdown while paychecks for members of our military could be disrupted,” Stabenow said in a statement. “This bill ensures members of Congress will not get paid and another bill I have cosponsored makes sure our troops will. Even if these bills do not pass, I will donate my salary for every single day a shutdown occurs.”
Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-N.Y.) introduced a companion bill in the House.
Several members of Congress have also announced individual plans to withhold their pay.
“I have been informed that despite a lapse of appropriations and current government shutdown, under current law, members of Congress would continue to receive their salary,” Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-Va.) wrote Friday in a letter to the House chief administrative officer. “Since I do not agree with that policy, please withhold my pay until an appropriations agreement has taken effect.
Rep. Will Hurd (R-Texas) also said he would withhold his pay, while Rep. John Delaney (D-Md.) said that he would donate his pay to the Mercy Health Clinic in Maryland.
There’s no good reason why Members should receive pay during a #shutdown while fed employees suffer. That’s why I plan to ask that my salary be withheld while we work to restore government funding. Please know that during this time my team and I are still working to serve #TX23. pic.twitter.com/3xVP2CPlVm