U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) said today that she will introduce legislation at the beginning of the new Congress to stop a salary increase for Members of Congress and other high-ranking federal officials that President Obama authorized last week. As part of an Executive Order he signed on December 27, Senators and House members are set to receive a 0.5 percent pay hike starting after March 27. Ayotte has long opposed salary increases for Members of Congress while the country is in debt.
"With our country $16 trillion in debt and every American facing a tax increase, it's astounding that the president would approve a pay raise for Congress and others serving at the highest levels of government. Given the dysfunction we've seen in Washington with the fiscal cliff, the last thing we should do is give bigger paychecks to Members of Congress and top federal officials," said Senator Ayotte. "The legislation I'm introducing will make sure the out of touch pay increase the president authorized for Members of Congress and other top officials will not go into effect."
The current Continuing Resolution that funds the government extends the existing pay freeze for Members of Congress through March 27, 2013. The president's December 27, 2012, executive order would implement a 0.5 percent across-the-board increase starting the first pay period after the expiration of the current CR (March 27, 2013).
Ayotte has supported numerous legislative efforts that seek to prevent senators and congressmen from receiving salary increases.
Last year, Senator Ayotte co-sponsored the bipartisan "No Budget, No Pay Act," which would dock pay for Members of Congress for failure to pass a budget resolution and regular appropriations bills before the start of the federal fiscal year. She also co-sponsored the Simpson-Bowles Spending Reductions Act of 2011 and the Down Payment to Protect National Security Act of 2012 - legislation that included provisions to extend a pay freeze for members of the House and Senate.