Staff pay

Congress Is Broken, and Staff Members Know Why
Survey reveals dissatisfaction with key performance measures

Staff members rated key areas of congressional dysfunction in a survey released Tuesday, including the low level of staff experience, a lack of time for members to focus on important issues and a paucity of access to nonpartisan reports. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Members of Congress will return in September to a glut of complex and technically challenging tasks, including tax policy, the debt ceiling, and Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

But they won’t have the staff expertise, time or outside resources to do the job.

Party Pay Gap: House Democrats Spend More On Staff Than GOP
37 of the 50 biggest spenders on aides' paychecks are Democrats

A Roll Call analysis shows that the average Democratic House member spends about $55,000 more in annual staff salaries than the average Republican. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As House lawmakers appeal to working class voters’ paychecks this election cycle, Democratic congressmen may have the edge with the workers closest to them — their aides.  

Democratic House members are spending more on staff than Republicans by about $150 per day, according to a Roll Call analysis of current voting members using House disbursement data made available by the Sunlight Foundation.  

Lawmaker Rants About Members Being Underpaid
 

Rep. Alcee L. Hastings took another shot at advocating for an unpopular cause when he argued to Legislative Branch committee leaders that in addition to staff, members of Congress should be getting a salary hike.

Hastings made the same case before the same House Rules committee considering the Legislative Branch spending bill last year. House members recently decided to pump up the amount in each members is allowed to have in an effort to offer potential salary increases for staff -- something the chamber hasn't done since 2010.

House Amendment Could Increase Staff Pay
But freeze on member pay remains in place

Rep. Sam Farr's amendment would increase the pay of congressional staff. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The House Appropriations Committee approved an amendment that could mean raises for some House staff.  

Appropriators adopted by voice vote a proposal from Rep. Sam Farr, D-Calif., that would provide an additional $8.3 million for the Members Representational Allowance account, a 1.5 percent increase that would come out of the Architect of the Capital Construction and Operations Fund.