Wenstrup Acting to Avoid Spending Showdowns in Congress
Introduces Legislation to Withhold Pay if Congress Fails to Act
Washington, February 4, 2016
Looking to end the recent cycle of government funding cliffs and last minute spending deals, Congressman Brad Wenstrup is working to hold members of Congress accountable for drama created by repeated crises. The Do Your Job Act, introduced by Wenstrup, would withhold pay from members of Congress if they failed to vote on spending bills before the end of the fiscal year on September 30th. Congressmen Jim Bridenstine, RSC Chairman Bill Flores, Jim Jordan, and Thomas Massie have joined Wenstrup in introducing the Do Your Job Act.
“If we don’t fulfill the responsibilities of our office, we shouldn’t get paid. That may require some tough votes,” Wenstrup said, pointing to the fact that the Senate had voted on only two of sixty appropriations bills in the last five years. “A three percent participation rate in the Senate is unacceptable, especially when it comes to how the government is supposed to operate in spending our money.”
The legislation would require that each chamber vote on all twelve of the regular spending bills, known as appropriations legislation, which range from Defense to Agriculture, by the end of the fiscal year on September 30th. A failure to cast these votes in either chamber would trigger a provision to withhold Congressional paychecks from members of that chamber.
“The American people are fed up with last second spending deals that don’t reflect their priorities,” Wenstrup said. “With a little incentive, I hope my colleagues in Washington may finally do the work the American people expect of us. We should vote well before last-minute deadlines so everyone has the opportunity to consider and debate how the government spends taxpayer money in an open and transparent way.”
A critical part of the Do Your Job Act requires spending bills be open to amendments in the House, Wenstrup noted. “This means that no spending bill could be rushed into a simple up or down vote without an opportunity for members to offer amendments.”