Opinion: Members of Congress should not be paid during a government shutdown

(Sinclair Broadcast Group)

There are many federal workers across the country who are keeping us safe and performing vital functions necessary to keep our country running but who are not getting paid during the shutdown.

Many are dipping into their savings to live. In the meantime, Congress continues to argue over whether they will fund the Trump administration’s request to secure our borders.

That raises the question: Should Members of Congress be paid at all during a shutdown?

While there are many Congressmen and women who have decided to forfeit their pay or donate it towards worthwhile causes there are still many who are drawing paychecks while furloughed employees face the consequences of this extended shutdown.

The Constitution prevents Members from passing legislation that effects their current pay. However, there are relatively few legal hurdles preventing them from passing such a measure for future sessions of Congress.

Efforts to freeze pay during shutdowns such as this one, as well as during times when Congress refuses to agree on a budget, have often been proposed but later died in the legislative process.

Hopefully, with how publicly nonsensical and lengthy this government shutdown has been, lawmakers will begin to feel the heat – and actually move forward on a fix to this problem.

Here’s the bottom line: Members of Congress are elected to ensure that the government serves the American people. Congress has failed at that job.

Members of Congress should face more than just the political repercussions of this partisan gridlock, they shouldn’t be paid.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Boris Epshteyn formerly served as a Senior Advisor to the Trump Campaign and served in the White House as Special Assistant to The President and Assistant Communications Director for Surrogate Operations.

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