GOP measure freezes lawmakers' office budgets

May 17, 2012 - 1:55 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Even as they press cuts to foreign aid, food stamps and a host of domestic programs, Republicans running the House of Representatives are opting against any further cuts to their own office budgets.

In draft legislation supported by Republicans and Democrats alike, the Appropriations Committee would instead freeze the $574 million budget for lawmakers' staff, travel and office expenses.

The spending freeze comes as Republicans are rewriting last summer's budget accord to press cuts to non-defense agency budget by 5 percent on average. The overall $3.3 Capitol Hill funding bill would absorb a 1 percent cut that comes from cutting back the budget for repairing the Capitol dome.

In two earlier rounds of appropriations bills for 2011 and 2012, Republicans imposed a 10.5 percent budget cut on the House.