Congress Critters Sleeping in Offices Complain D.C. Rent Is Too Damn High

Congress Critters Sleeping in Offices Complain D.C. Rent Is Too Damn High

Congress Critters Sleeping in Offices Complain D.C. Rent Is Too Damn High

Well, cry me a damned river. Do the Congress Critters ever get out into the real world?

Some of them are playing the world’s tiniest violin these days, complaining that they’re being forced to sleep in their congressional offices because housing costs in the District of Columbia are too damn high. Cue this dude:

I’ll wait while you complete your eye-roll.

Ready? Ok.

Here’s their complaint:

Crying poverty amid decade-long stagnant salaries and Washington’s steep cost of living, an increasing number of House lawmakers have turned into professional squatters at night, hitting the sack in their Capitol Hill offices — on everything from cots in closets to futons stashed behind constituent couches — to save a few bucks during the work week.

“Washington is too expensive,” said Rep. Dan Donovan (R-SI), who credits the cot that he sleeps on in a tiny alcove in his office as the reason he is able to serve in Congress while still paying his New York City housing costs.

“If we go to the point where you have to rent or have to buy [in DC], then only millionaires would be members of Congress,’’ he said. “I don’t think that was the intent of our Founding Fathers.”

True. They also didn’t intend for government-teat leeches to squat in office for several decades, then retire with a fat pension. AND THEN COMPLAIN ABOUT IT.

So…

  • One: NO ONE MADE YOU RUN FOR OFFICE. Yes, I’m yelling.

Many of them previously got extra compensation, or a per diem, when they served in their home-state legislatures to cover their living expenses while at the state capitol. New York state lawmakers in Albany, for example, get $175 for each day they are in town. In other large cities such as Sacramento, Calif., the daily stipend rises to $183, and in Austin, Texas, it is $190.

  • Two: It’s YOUR RESPONSIBILTY to research what winning an election might COST YOU financially. Still yelling.
  • Three: YOU MAKE 174 grand PER YEAR. That’s about a hundred grand more than my family makes—also a stagnant wage, by the way—and SOMEHOW WE GET BY. Nope, not done yelling.

But as members of the House, US reps receive a salary of $174,000 a year — a figure that hasn’t increased in nearly a decade — and no housing allowance, while working in a city where a sparse one-bedroom pad can start at $2,000 a month. Meanwhile, they also have to pay to maintain a residence in their home state.

Members of the House and Senate leadership seem to fare better, if only because they rake in nearly $20,000 more a year, or $193,400. There are few if any known examples of senators bunking down in their offices overnight.

They definitely deserve a raise, don’t you think? Sarcasm on blast.

  • Four: MOST IMPORTANTLY, I’m pretty stinkin’ certain that these people care precisely JACK about your oh-so-tough life:
At one point, Oregon was among the states with the highest rate of child homelessness. (Photo Credit: KGW)
Veteran homelessness is the great shame of this country. San Francisco, CA. (Photo Credit: HereAndNow.WBUR.org)

But California is the future, according to Kamala Harris (D-CA), the senator from Cal who’s desperate to become President.

But wait, there’s more: to remedy this oh-so-imminent threat to our Republic for which they stand—er, sleep in their office closets and bitch about it—they’ll be offering up legislation to halt this outrage:

Proposed legislation set to be introduced in the House as soon as this month would prohibit politicians from turning their offices into makeshift sleeping quarters, arguing that the move is violating IRS and congressional ethics rules.

“Look, it’s unhealthy. It’s nasty. I wouldn’t want to be entertained in somebody’s bedroom,” said Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), who is among those spearheading the bill.

“Sleeping in your office is not proper’’ ethically, either, Thompson said. “You get free cable. Free electricity. Free janitorial. Free security. No rent. It’s a heck of a deal. It probably comes out to $25,000 to $30,000’’ a year that isn’t claimed at tax time.

Proposed by an elitist, I-know-best Democrat whose suddenly concerned about tax codes and national debt. Naturally. Will he propose the same type of legislation for America’s homeless population? Because removing the eyesore that so offends the “woke” is definitely the solution to homelessness. *eyeroll*

Here’s a suggestion: IF your sleeping arrangements are having such a detrimental affect on your psyche and your pocketbook is sitting empty on your congressional office Lay-Z-Boy , you’re FREE TO RESIGN and let someone who’s not motivated by collecting six figures, and then complaining about it, fill your seat. You know, people who CARE about the epidemic of veteran homelessness. And CARE about child homelessness. Because wouldn’t it be amazing if we sent legislators to DC who actually, you know, worked on behalf of the people, sucked-up the sacrifice necessary to serve, and were grateful for the opportunity?

Yeah, #MeToo.

In the meantime, boo freakin’ hoo.

Now I’m done yelling.

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9 Comments
  • GWB says:

    I tend to agree that there’s a real problem. I disagree about the solution.
    I think we should establish dormitories for the congresscritters.
    Co-ed. Including the bathrooms. Open bay, with bunks and footlockers (OK, we can go with that modular dorm furniture if you insist). No firearms. No alcohol. No cigarettes, fatty foods, sugar, or gluten (and peanuts are RIGHT OUT). Inspections. And reveille at 5:30am – every day. And only one type of deodorant.

    Make them live the way they want US to live.

    Or, you could reduce gov’t to the scope and scale intended in the Constitution, and send these folks home for half the year. That would save loads on housing costs.
    (BTW, places like TX pay for the housing costs of their legislators because they really are temporarily in town. They don’t spend half the year or more actually in the capitol.)

  • Oldav8r says:

    How about we get the Congress out of DC. Their offices should be in their home districts. They can debate, confer, deliberate and vote remotely. They can gather once or twice a year for no more than a week to do whatever the hell it is they think they need to do in the District. (Also no paychecks until the budget is finalized.)

  • Dana says:

    Actually, I can see their point: imagine having to maintain two households, on in DC and one in New York City or Boston or Chicago. You can’t have a second job, and the only ways to supplement your income are things like paid honoraria and the like.

    They can’t all be like the dead broke Hillary Clinton, who bought a mansion in Georgetown upon being elected to the Senate.

    If a congressman has to pinch pennies, I’m happy about that; maybe he’ll appreciate what working class Americans have to do to make ends meet.

  • Dana says:

    There are a few lucky congressmen, those whose districts are close enough to DC to commute to their regular homes. Joe Biden used to take Amtrak back home to Wilmington, Delaware every night.

  • Farmer Dave says:

    close down the IRS and convert the building into government housing for the critters, one bedroom efficiency, common room for events and a cafeteria. underground subway to work, no other stops. Like the idea of reveille, UP AND AT EM. and just to keep things interesting lease it to the TRUMP company for management, great job for a retired president

  • Garland Twitty says:

    Excellent column! Excellent reader suggestions!

    But gosh, do suppose there is a correlation between the number of bureaucrats living in DC and the cost of housing? What if the federal government were smaller because Congress embraced federalism?

    By the way, don’t members of Congress have their health care insurance payed for by taxpayers?

  • Ruffin says:

    Cut the size of government and there won’t be so much competition for housing.

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