"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." -- Mahatma Gandhi

Uneasy Bipartisan Alliance Protects Pay Raise

June 28th, 2007 by mopns · No Comments


By Jonathan Allen, CQ Staff

As Ohio Republican Deborah Pryce campaigned for re-election at parades and other public appearances last year, constituents greeted her with sarcastic catcalls such as, “Give yourself another pay raise.”

Pryce was among the targets of Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) ads that resonated with voters in her Columbus district.

The ad campaign accused Republicans of voting to raise their own pay while ignoring the needs of constituents. It obliterated a longstanding informal pact between party leaders in which they agreed to protect annual cost-of-living adjustments for lawmakers and to abstain from using pay raises in political campaigns.

But with a little help from across the aisle, House Democrats mustered a 244-181 vote Wednesday for a procedural maneuver that prevented critics of the pay raise from offering an amendment to block the next scheduled increase.

Jo Ann Emerson, R-Mo., who opposes the annual increases, said it is difficult to justify to constituents with a median income of less than $28,000 why her salary should be any higher than the current $165,200.

The arrangement between party leaders caused some uncomfortable moments on the floor as Minority Whip Roy Blunt, R-Mo., worked to flip GOP votes to make sure more than half his caucus had voted for the previous question. Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer, D-Md., signaled across the room to Blunt to indicate how many more Republicans were needed. Read more…

Related:

The Turner Report: “Blunt works for Congressional pay raise”

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Tags: Rep. Jo Ann Emerson · Rep. Roy Blunt

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