GOP's YouCut targets federal pay raises


The House GOP’s YouCut program this week seeks to put next year’s proposed 1.4 percent civilian raise on the chopping block. And so far, it’s the top choice to be cut — House Minority Whip Eric Cantor, R-Va., said today that 40 percent of the nearly 218,000 votes cast so far this week were in favor of eliminating the 2011 raise. (People must really want to keep those mohair subsidies.)

YouCut combines the democratic ideals of American Idol with the excitement of a Heritage Foundation seminar. Each week, Republicans propose five programs to be cut, and then let people vote online or via text message on which one they want to slash. The GOP then tries to force a vote on the cuts on the House floor, but lawmakers last week voted 240 to 177 to keep the first YouCut “winner,” the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program’s $2.5 billion emergency fund.

Cantor said the proposal to cut the 2011 raise could be brought to the House floor this week. Eliminating pay raises would save $2 billion next year and, if it is continued, $30 billion over the next decade, he said. “This vote won’t be easy for everyone, but it is exactly the kind of choice we must begin to make to get us off the path towards financial ruin,” he said.

The proposal would not affect the military’s pay raise. The Obama adminstration wants to give service members a 1.4 percent raise, but some lawmakers want to bump it up to 1.9 percent.

This is sure to increase the political temperature surrounding federal raises, and may make it difficult for lawmakers to support pay parity, at the very least. What do you think about YouCut taking aim at federal salaries?

Video of Cantor after the jump:



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  1. Cutting the salary increase is a good idea. Here’s why:

    According to Jonh Berry, head of OPM, only 2% of Feds quit (as opposed to retire) each year. The other 98% hang in there. They stay because they have a good deal, and they are not able to do better elsewhere.

    So, cutting the salary increase would be no problem at all. Feds would complain, to be sure, but they would not go away!

  2. William Patterson on

    I think no one in Washington needs or deserves a pay raise if they want to give out pay raises give it to the senior citizens we need and desearve the money they do not.

  3. Jacqueline Young on

    Again, no problem as long as the House and Senate members STOP their so-called factfinding trips all over the world thus saving thousands of federal travel dollars; cutting their extremely generous retirement benefits which far out pace regular federal employees’ retirement; put a moratorium on their pay raises for 10 years; and any and all other perks, bonuses, freebies, etc. that they get as members of the House and Senate!

  4. I think they are all over paid and should take a 20% pay cut!!!!!!!!!!!
    They are getting a lot more than the public sector and we have to pay their outrages salaries!!!!!!!!!.

  5. Cutting federal employee salaries is a great idea but I think that a 15% cut of ALL programs would be a step in the right direction. I’ve had to cut my personal budget more than that and my business has had to cut more than 20%. It was hard but it can be done.

  6. yes they should take a pay cut!!! They should also have to take commercial flights(in coach) only!!! If they are already rich donate your pay to the deficit!!! And if they pushed through healthcare they should be in on that plan!!!!!

  7. Daniel Young on

    I thought on the libs were uneducated until reading these comments. People need to differentiate between Feds and Congress. It is a mistake to continue to fill Homeland Security (especially Border Protection), FBI, and other critical Federal positions with sub-par candidates. Do a quick google and see how many CBP agents are arrested each year for illegal misconduct. If you want to trim the fat get rid of the IRS and implement a straight across the board federal flat tax. And get rid of the waste in the Census Bureau.

  8. Larry Martin on

    During one of the worst economic down turns in history congress continues to inject special interest provisions in bills. How dare they penalize Federal employees when they liberally give out billions of dollars of free money to every country around the world. Charity begins at home! Don’t even get me started on what it costs us by subsidizing illegal immigrations. The better solution would be to put a freeze on hiring or foreign aid. However, as the administration moves us to a Socialist society, most jobs will be Federal.

  9. Congress should vote itself a pay freeze for 5 years, banned of all lobbyist perks and conduct themselves as public servants. No special medical care, such as emergency room visits for chest pains. They should have to sit in urgent care facilities for hours just like the rest of us. No hefty retirement perks, no special travel comforts or not-for-public benefit trip junkets.

    It’s time we start paying them accordingly. If we base it on the last 8 years, they owe the American tax payers a huge refund of their salary.

  10. As a Federal Employee I need my payraise every year to offset the increase in my insurance plan. After everything is taken out of my payraise I may see $30-40 a month, my insurance typically goes up $100. I usually end up switching to a policy with a higher deductible, higher co-pay and lower premium to stay in my budget. I have 2 daughters and need my insurance. If you can keep the insurance premiums from going up the pay cut wouldn’t be a big deal. I am willing voluntarily to tighten my belt, but I am being forced to do it by an Act of Congress, shouldn’t Congress do it voluntarily as a show of good faith. Or don’t they have any left in them.

  11. Scanning comments on this page beginning w Robert Benson indicates that many of these remarks are made from the hip and inaccurate. I am a fed and certainly could find a job as systems analyst in the private sector paying a great deal more than I receive. Further, Feds are required to travel coach…open private info (medical, financial, etc) for routine audits. Congress has caused the problem, let them take the hit. Quit giving handouts to people who do not work or deserve them, fire contractors, fire unions (dont start a new one for TSA), eliminate the fat at the top, quite giving $60k and more as bonuses, quit paying for illegals. I do not have extremely generous retirement benefits in fact will have to work much longer than private sector to be able to eat. I began working 20 years ago for the feds at 5.50 an hour. I deserve everything I am making. I work overtime without getting paid time and a half or double time. There is certainly room for cuts throughout the federal architecture but hitting the folks doing the work is the wrong place to start. By the way, the GS scale (where the majority of the feds work) tops out at 153k…leaving the rest to SES positions. What percentage of the federal work force is paid over 153k? Please, be sensible, get the facts, save the passion for your spouse.

  12. Freezing is not cutting…start CUTTING spending and start CUTTING taxes and start CUTTING pay and we’ll take you seriously Mr. President.

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