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Congress Gets a Raise

Watchdog groups slam lawmakers' automatic pay raise amid economic chaos
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 18, 2008 6:51 AM CST
Congress Gets a Raise
Congressional salaries will go up by $4,700 starting in January 2009.   (Shutter Stock)

(Newser) – The flatlining economy hasn't stopped Congress from getting a pay raise, the Hill reports. Lawmakers will get an extra $4,700 a year starting in January, amounting to a total of $2.5 million. The 2.8% automatic raise is only half as large as the cost of living adjustment for Social Security recipients, but critics say it's insensitive in light of troubles facing taxpayers—and Congress' own push to limit auto execs' salaries to $1 a year.

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"Look at the way the economy is and how most people aren’t counting on a holiday bonus or a pay raise—they’re just happy to have gainful employment,” said a taxpayer-watchdog group exec. “But you have the lawmakers who are ready to get their next installment of a pay raise and go happily along their way.” (Read more Congress stories.)

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