Rep. Hank Johnson: 'We Earn' Our $174K Salary

By Eric Scheiner | November 26, 2012 | 1:23pm EST

(CNSNews.com) - Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) says members of Congress "earn" their $174,000 per year salary (plus benefits) and that this compensation is “not elaborate."

"The benefits and salary that we get, we earn," Johnson said at the Annesbrooks HOA Candidate Forum in Georgia in October. "It’s not elaborate, it’s just a bunch of poppycock that a lot of people have spread around trying to get us to hate our own government and our government representatives.”

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According to a Congressional Research Services report compensation for most representatives and senators is $174,000 a year.

Additionally, members of Congress are eligible to enroll in health and life insurance plans, can opt into a pension plan and are offered a variety of reimbursements and allowances to support them in their representational duties.

The Congressional Research Service has reported the average annual Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) annuity was $69,420 in 2010. The Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS), which went into effect in 1987, averaged a retirement annuity (not including Social Security) of $38,460 in 2010. Depending on when they began their service former lawmakers may choose to participate in either plan.

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