Congressman Vern Buchanan

Representing the 16th District of Florida

No Pay Raise for Congress!

Jan 25, 2017
Press Release
Buchanan Introduces Bill to Ban Congressional Raises until Budget Is Balanced

Failure to Stop Rising Red Ink is “Downright Immoral”

WASHINGTON – Citing a recent government watchdog report that the federal debt is on an “unsustainable” path and nearing a record $20 trillion, U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Fla., announced today that he has introduced legislation to ban pay raises for members of Congress until the federal budget is balanced.

“Successful businesses do not reward an employee who fails to do their job,” Buchanan said. “This same common sense must be used in Washington. Members of Congress should not be eligible for pay raises if they cannot fulfill one of their most basic responsibilities.”

The federal government has accumulated $19.9 trillion in debt. According to a recent study by the Government Accountability Office, the growing debt increases the likelihood of a “fiscal crisis.”

The Congressman called Washington’s failure to rein in the growing debt “downright immoral” as millions of American families are forced to make tough financial decisions each day. Buchanan also noted that the U.S. has joined a short list of industrialized nations – along with Greece and Iceland – whose debt exceeds its total economic output.

Specifically, the No Pay Raise for Congress Act prohibits pay raises for members of Congress in any fiscal year they fail to balance the budget.

“Forty-nine states, including Florida, are required by law to balance the budget,” Buchanan said. “In Florida, passing a balanced budget is priority number one for the state legislature. Washington should not be held to a different standard.”

Additionally, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office projected on Tuesday that unless Congress acts, the federal deficit is estimated to balloon by nearly $10 trillion over the next decade.

“We can’t allow our children and grandchildren to carry this burden,” Buchanan said.

Earlier this month Buchanan also introduced an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that requires Congress to balance the federal budget.