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Public Statements


Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. BARROW of Georgia. Mr. Speaker, in my district, thousands of government employees are being forced to work without pay. Thousands more have been laid off. All because Congress can't get its act together long enough to do our most basic job: to keep the government running. They're ready, willing, and able to do their jobs, but can't--because Congress has failed to do its job.

Folks back home ask me: Why do you get paid, but we don't?

We're told that the Constitution requires that Members of Congress get paid, whether or not they do their job. I think that's wrong, and I have introduced legislation to change it. While folks at home don't get paid, I don't think we should get paid.

I'm not talking about asking the Clerk to sit on our checks until after this is over; that's no sacrifice. That's why I'm donating my pay to the Augusta Warrior Project for the duration of the shutdown. I'm giving it to folks who can use it, and I'm calling on all of my colleagues to do the same.

It's about accountability, Mr. Speaker. If Members of Congress didn't get paid for not doing their job, maybe they would appreciate those who do their job a little bit more.

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