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Pension halt for Congress' crooks

  1. Nov 30, 2006 #1

    Ivan Seeking

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    WASHINGTON — More than 20 citizen groups are urging the new Democratic leaders in Congress to include in any ethics reform the denial of pensions to lawmakers convicted of felonies.

    "We must end the practice of rewarding lawmakers who abuse the law with plush pension packages funded by the American taxpayer," the coalition wrote in a letter to be sent today to Rep. Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Harry Reid, who will become speaker of the House and Senate majority leader when Democrats assume control of Congress in January. [continued][/quote]

    What a novel idea! :rolleyes: Yes, I can get behind that one.
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 30, 2006 #2


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    I could agree with that if it were for actions committed while in office.

    I don't have a serious problem with yanking retirement benefits for any lawmakers convicted of a felony, but their retirement really is part of the compensation package for the time they serve in Congress. In the interests of fairness, what they do after or before their time in Congress should be irrelevant.

    I'd also categorize their pensions as "pretty damn good" rather than plush. The typical pension is around $41,000 to $55,000 a year - but only because most Congressmen don't serve that many years. I think a Congressman needs to serve 5 years before they're eligible to receive a retirement benefit and one serving a single six year Senate term would get $16,500 a year for the rest of their life. Not a bad add-on to whatever job they work the rest of their life considering they only served 6 years. The 'plush' retirements are generally drawn by those that have spent 20 years or more in Congress and have COLA kick in. Some of those that served 30 years in Congress, retired around 50, and still alive around 80 are receiving some pretty hefty retirement money.
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