Connect with us
The House raises Members' pay by avoiding a direct vote on the politically volatile subject.

archive

Roll Call: House Avoids Direct Vote On Members’ Pay Raise

The House raises Members’ pay by avoiding a direct vote on the politically volatile subject.

On September 4, by a vote of 240 to 173, the House, in effect, raised members’ pay by approving a motion to order the previous question while considering the 2004 appropriations bill for the Departments of Transportation and Treasury.

Although complicated and obscure, this parliamentary maneuver allowed Congress to give itself a pay raise without taking a direct up-or-down vote.

The only member to speak against the procedural motion was Rep. Jim Matheson (D.-Utah), who raised the obvious point that the nation is in crisis with the war on terrorism and the war in Iraq, and facing a $500-billion deficit. It is therefore inappropriate, he argued, for Congress to give itself an automatic cost-of-living increase without even the accountability of an up-or-down vote.

“These are difficult times in our nation,” said Matheson. “We are fighting terrorism on numerous fronts. Our economy is in serious trouble, unemployment is at record-high levels, and our future budget deficits are predicted to be the highest in the history of this great nation. Now is not the time for members of Congress to be voting themselves a pay raise.”

Matheson, a relatively conservative Democrat who narrowly won re-election last year, was a lonely voice for fiscal sanity on the House floor.

“We need to show the American people that we are willing to make sacrifices,” he said. “We need to budget, live within our means and make careful spending decisions based on our most pressing priorities,” he said. Let us send a signal to the American people that we recognize their struggle in today’s economy. Vote no on the previous question so we can have an opportunity to block the automatic cost-of-living adjustment to members of Congress. Regardless of how Members feel about this issue, they should all be willing to make their position public and on the record.”

Most Congressmen disagreed, however. Congress will therefore get its 2.2% cost of living adjustment (COLA) and nenbers’ salaries will reach $158,000 next year.

Conservative activists were upset at Congress’ insistence upon avoiding this vote. Since 1989, the cost of living adjustment has been automatic each year.

“Members of Congress have the only job in the country whose occupants can set their own salary without regard to performance, profit, or economic climate,” said Tom Schatz, president of Citizens Against Government Waste. “Clearly, members must think that money grows on trees. With a $480 billion deficit, the escalating cost of the war in Iraq, and a stagnant economy, Congress should be curbing spending, not lining their pockets at our expense.”

A “yes” vote was a vote to order the previous question and let Congress have a pay raise without an up-or-down vote. A “no” vote was a vote to force such an up-or-down vote, and put Congressmen on the record for giving themselves a pay hike in tough economic times.

FOR THE MOTION: 240 AGAINST THE MOTION: 173
REPUBLICANS FOR: 128
Aderholt
Akin
Baker
Ballenger
Barton (TX)
Bass
Bereuter
Biggert
Bilirakis
Blunt
Boehlert
Boehner
Bonilla
Bonner
Bono
Brown (SC)
Buyer
Calvert
Camp
Cannon
Cantor
Castle
Cole
Cox
Crane
Crenshaw
Cubin
Culberson
Cunningham
Davis, Tom
DeLay
Diaz-Balart, L.
Diaz-Balart, M.
Doolittle
Dreier
Dunn
Ehlers
Emerson
Everett
Feeney
Ferguson
Frelinghuysen
Gallegly
Garrett (NJ)
Gilchrest
Gillmor
Goodlatte
Goss
Granger
Greenwood
Gutknecht
Hastings (WA)
Hefley
Herger
Hobson
Hoekstra
Hunter
Issa
Istook
Johnson, Sam
King (IA)
King (NY)
Kingston
Kirk
Kline
Knollenberg
Kolbe
Latham
LaTourette
Leach
Lewis (CA)
Linder
Lucas (OK)
Manzullo
McCotter
McCrery
McHugh
McInnis
McKeon
Miller, Gary
Miller (MI)
Myrick
Nethercutt
Ney
Nunes
Nussle
Osborne
Ose
Otter
Oxley
Pence
Pombo
Portman
Pryce (OH)
Putnam
Quinn
Radanovich
Rehberg
Reynolds
Rogers (KY)
Rohrabacher
Ros-Lehtinen
Saxton
Schrock
Shadegg
Shaw
Simpson
Smith (MI)
Smith (NJ)
Smith (TX)
Souder
Sweeney
Tancredo
Tauzin
Thomas
Thornberry
Tiberi
Turner (OH)
Upton
Walsh
Wamp
Weldon (PA)
Weller
Wicker
Wilson (NM)
Wilson (SC)
Wolf
Young (FL)

DEMOCRATS FOR: 112
Abercrombie
Ackerman
Baca
Ballance
Berman
Bishop (GA)
Blumenauer
Boucher
Boyd
Brady (PA)
Brown, Corrine
Capuano
Cardin
Clay
Clyburn
Conyers
Cooper
Cramer
Crowley
Cummings
Davis (FL)
Davis (IL)
Delahunt
DeLauro
Dicks
Dingell
Doggett
Doyle
Eshoo
Fattah
Filner
Frank (MA)
Frost
Gonzalez
Green (TX)
Gutierrez
Harman
Hastings (FL)
Hinchey
Hinojosa
Hoeffel
Honda
Hoyer
Jackson (IL)
Jackson-Lee (TX)
Jefferson
Johnson, E. B.
Jones (OH)
Kanjorski
Kennedy (RI)
Kilpatrick
Lantos
Larson (CT)
Lee
Levin
Lewis (GA)
Lipinski
Lowey
Lynch
Majette
Markey
Matsui
McCarthy (MO)
McCollum
McDermott
McNulty
Meehan
Meek (FL)
Meeks (NY)
Menendez
Millender-McDonald
Miller, George
Mollohan
Moran (VA)
Murtha
Nadler
Neal (MA)
Oberstar
Olver
Ortiz
Owens
Pallone
Pascrell
Pastor
Pelosi
Peterson (MN)
Rahall
Reyes
Rothman
Ruppersberger
Rush
Sabo
Sanchez, Linda
Schakowsky
Scott (VA)
Serrano
Sherman
Skelton
Solis
Stark
Tauscher
Thompson (MS)
Towns
Van Hollen
Velazquez
Visclosky
Waters
Watson
Watt
Weiner
Wexler
Wynn

REPUBLICANS AGAINST: 92
Bachus
Barrett (SC)
Bartlett (MD)
Beauprez
Bishop (UT)
Blackburn
Boozman
Bradley (NH)
Brady (TX)
Brown-Waite, V.
Burgess
Burns
Burr
Capito
Carter
Chabot
Chocola
Coble
Collins
Davis, Jo Ann
Deal (GA)
Duncan
English
Flake
Fletcher
Foley
Forbes
Fossella
Franks (AZ)
Gerlach
Gibbons
Gingrey
Goode
Green (WI)
Harris
Hart
Hayes
Hayworth
Hensarling
Hostettler
Houghton
Hulshof
Isakson
Jenkins
Johnson (CT)
Johnson (IL)
Jones (NC)
Keller
Kelly
Kennedy (MN)
LaHood
Lewis (KY)
LoBiondo
Mica
Miller (FL)
Moran (KS)
Murphy
Musgrave
Neugebauer
Northup
Norwood
Paul
Pearce
Peterson (PA)
Petri
Pitts
Platts
Porter
Ramstad
Renzi
Rogers (AL)
Rogers (MI)
Royce
Ryan (WI)
Ryun (KS)
Sensenbrenner
Sessions
Shays
Sherwood
Shimkus
Shuster
Simmons
Stearns
Sullivan
Taylor (NC)
Terry
Tiahrt
Toomey
Vitter
Walden (OR)
Weldon (FL)
Whitfield

DEMOCRATS AGAINST: 80
Alexander
Allen
Baird
Baldwin
Becerra
Bell
Berkley
Berry
Bishop (NY)
Boswell
Brown (OH)
Capps
Cardoza
Carson (IN)
Carson (OK)
Case
Costello
Davis (AL)
Davis (CA)
Davis (TN)
DeFazio
Deutsch
Edwards
Emanuel
Etheridge
Evans
Farr
Ford
Gordon
Grijalva
Hall
Hill
Holden
Holt
Hooley (OR)
Inslee
Israel
Kaptur
Kildee
Kind
Kleczka
Lampson
Langevin
Larsen (WA)
Lofgren
Lucas (KY)
Maloney
Marshall
Matheson
McCarthy (NY)
McGovern
McIntyre
Michaud
Miller (NC)
Moore
Napolitano
Obey
Pomeroy
Price (NC)
Ross
Ryan (OH)
Sanchez, Loretta
Sandlin
Schiff
Scott (GA)
Slaughter
Smith (WA)
Snyder
Spratt
Stenholm
Strickland
Stupak
Tanner
Taylor (MS)
Thompson (CA)
Tierney
Turner (TX)
Udall (CO)
Udall (NM)
Wu

INDEPENDENTS AGAINST: 1
Sanders

NOT VOTING: 21

REPUBLICANS (8): DEMOCRATS (13): INDEPENDENTS (0)
Burton (IN)
DeMint
Graves
Hyde
Janklow
Pickering
Regula
Young (AK)
Andrews
DeGette
Dooley (CA)
Engel
Gephardt
John
Kucinich
Payne
Rangel
Rodriguez
Roybal-Allard
Waxman
Woolsey
Newsletter Signup.

Sign up to the Human Events newsletter

Written By

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Advertisement
Advertisement

TRENDING NOW:

The Divided State of Britain.

CULTURE

Big Tech Big Tech

‘Principled’ Rightists Have Forgotten What the Principles Are.

TECH

‘Squash Amash’ Rally Takes Aim at Michigan’s Anti-Trump GOP Rep

U.S. POLITICS

Gulf of Oman 'attack': Oil tankers on fire amid rising tensions between Iran and rivals Gulf of Oman 'attack': Oil tankers on fire amid rising tensions between Iran and rivals

Don’t Rush to War with Iran Over Some Tankers.

U.S. POLITICS

Connect
Newsletter Signup.

Sign up to the Human Events newsletter