WASHINGTON (AP) – A bipartisan push to increase lawmakers’ salaries after a decade-long pay freeze could be close to unraveling.
Some freshman House Democrats are recoiling at the idea. The tumult prompted Democratic leaders Monday night to delay action on annual legislation to fund congressional operations, a measure that Republicans used over the past eight years to block a yearly cost-of-living pay increase that lawmakers are supposed to get automatically.
The annual COLA has been frozen since President Barack Obama’s tenure, and most lawmakers have never received one.
Rank and file lawmakers make $174,000 per year, a salary that doesn’t go nearly as far as it used to, especially with rapidly rising housing costs in the nation’s capital. Many lawmakers sleep in their offices during weeks in Washington rather than maintain two homes.