New Lawmakers to Slumber on Hill

Office will double as bedroom for some frugal freshmen
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Nov 29, 2010 11:12 AM CST
Some new lawmakers plan to sleep in their offices.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – As they start their lives in Washington, the 94 incoming members of the House of Representatives need places to live—and about 15% are considering simply using their offices. The move puts their disdain for Washington, and for spending, on display. “It's the ultimate I'm-not-a-professional-politician statement,” write Michael M. Phillips and Danny Yadron in the Wall Street Journal. The last time it was trendy? After the 1994 midterms.

But “I'm not doing this as a political stunt," says Indiana Republican Todd Rokita. "I'm doing this because I'm a cheap b—." Says Democrat Clarke Hansen, "I don't want to be comfortable in Washington because I need to get back to metro Detroit. I'm only in Washington to work." The offices have toilets, but if lawmakers want beds, they’ll have to buy cots—or they can crash on the couch. They can shower at the House gym. But just because Congress is having a sleepover doesn’t mean things will be warm and cuddly. “I don't want to see you in your bathrobe,” one Republican told a colleague.

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