For Immediate Release: For More Information Contact:

Friday, September 11, 1995 Ralph Nader (202) 296-2787

Gary Ruskin (202) 296-2787

Don't Exempt Congressional Pay From Federal Government Shutdown

Statement By Ralph Nader:

The depredations of greedy career politicians forever amaze the American taxpayer.

We citizens are faced with the prospect of a federal government shut-down, including a halt of some important government services and programs. Thousands of federal employees may lose their paychecks. But not members of Congress, who have contrived to shelter their fattened wallets in the event of a collapse of federal operations.

This is leadership by hypocrisy, not leadership by example.

I urge citizens to support legislation by Rep. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) (H.R. 2281, S. 1220) which would prevent members of Congress from exempting their paychecks in the event of a federal government shut-down. This legislation is the antidote to arrogant members of Congress who wish to spare themselves the pain of a government shut-down, while millions of Americans suffer.

Members of Congress are currently paid an overgenerous $133,600 per year, plus excessive pensions, and a lengthy list of perks.