Congressional Salaries Should Not Go Up Until Federal Spending Is Under Control, Hatch Says

January 29, 2010 - 7:34 PM
After the Congressional Budget Office projected $6 trillion total in new national debt over the next 10 years, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) told CNSNews.com that the salaries of members of Congress should not go up  until Congress does a "really good job of getting budgetary spending under control."
(CNSNews.com) - While the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reported last week a projected $6 trillion total in new national debt over the next 10 years, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) told CNSNews.com that the salaries of members of Congress should not go up  until Congress does a “really good job of getting budgetary spending under control.”
 
At the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 28, CNSNews.com asked Sen. Hatch, “The president said middle class Americans are tightening their belts so Washington should do the same. Do you think the salaries of members of Congress should be frozen until the budget is balanced?”
 
 “Well, I certainly don’t think we should be going up in salaries. You know, some of us have made more money before we got here than we make here now -- so it’s clear that we’re not here for the money, and I was one of them,” Hatch answered.
 

 
“But, to make a long story short, I’m not for increasing salaries of federal employees as long as we don’t do a really, really good job of getting budgetary spending under control,” said Hatch, adding, “I don’t believe you should do that strictly with taxes either. We are taxing the American people to death right now, and we ought to quit doing it.”
 
In his State of the Union speech on Jan. 27, President Barack Obama said, “Families across the country are tightening their belts and making tough decisions. The federal government should do the same.”
 
In its report released on Jan. 26, the CBO projected there will be $6.074 trillion in new national debt over the next 10 years if current laws governing taxing and spending are maintained.
 
A transcript of the exchange between CNSNews.com and Hatch follows below:
 
CNSNews.com:  “The president said middle-class Americans are tightening their belts so Washington should do the same. Do you think the salaries of members of Congress should be frozen until the budget is balanced?
 
Sen. Orrin Hatch: “Well, I certainly don’t think we should be going up in salaries. You know, some of us have made more money before we got here than we make here now, so it’s clear that we’re not here for the money, and I was one of them. But, to make a long story short, I’m not for increasing salaries of federal employees as long as we don’t do a really, really good job of getting budgetary spending under control, and I don’t believe you should do that strictly with taxes either. We are taxing the American people to death right now, and we ought to quit doing it.”