Glenn Beck: Congressional pay should be the same as solider’s salary

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(WIREUPDATE) — Conservative talk show host Glenn Beck tackled Congressional reform on Friday during his Fox News program. With an audience full of West Point cadets Beck made the argument that Congressional pay should not be more than the men and women who serve in the United States military. Beck also said those employed as Federal workers should not be paid more than the average American citizen.

“Everyone focuses on ‘How are we going to get out of this giant debt?’ You cannot get out of this debt. You cannot get out of the box we have created for ourselves.  You certainly can’t do it if you don’t have truth, if you don’t have honesty. If we don’t restore ourselves first.”


“There are simple things we can do.” Beck continued. “There are common sense things we can do.”

“The average guy in the U.S. Army serves for four years and they get out as a specialist. As a specialist they make $22,676. They pick up a gun and go in the line of fire because your country asks you too for $22,676. They aren’t doing it for money. ”

“The average American makes $50,462.”

“Now here is where it gets good. The average salary of a federal employee, you know the ones who can never get the paperwork right make 74,403.”

“The average person serving in Congress. Remember they use that word, they don’t call it a job. They serve. [The Average American] is their master, [The US Army] is the guardian that protects them as [the average persons in congress] are supposedly protecting the Constitution. How much does [the average persons in congress] get paid for their service. This is the basic salary. $174,000.”

“Which one is the master and which one is the servant? Which one has the most greatful for and yet doesn’t seem to be. It goes back to the idea of cleaning out the stuff in our life. Maybe it is they have too much. ”

“We have to cut our budgets. In the book “Broke” I outline budget cuts. And one of them is controversial is I take on the Department of Defense. And the reason I did it is it’s easy to right a chapter on how we have to shut off NPR. I can do that in my sleep. I wanted to show you that the one thing I care the most about is the defence of our nation and we can make inteligent cuts without hurting our defense and without hurting people. We can actualy help people.”

“John Boehner said when he becomes House Speaker he’s going to fly back and forth from his home to Washington on commercial airline. Nancy Pelosi had to use a military aircraft and I don’t care, for security we do what we have to do. Here’s the thing with Boehner — If he’s flying commercial he’ll fight hard against the naked scanners at the airport that nobody wants. Maybe we should have the naked scanners in the rooms of Congress. I commend him for spending less and anyone who yells at him or calls him a dope while he’s at the airport, well I guess he’ll have to chaulk it up as a slight wound in the ‘service’ of his country. And he will certainly not receive more wounds than these guys,” Beck said referring to  the West Point cadets in his studio audience.

“This is a step in the right direction. Here is what I would like to propose — and I would like you to take this on . These guys in Washington couldn’t say no this, they couldn’t.”

Congressmen SHALL NOT be paid more than those who are currently serving in the front line of duty. They shall never make more than $22,676. There is no reason Congress should enrich themselves and make more money then somoene who is on the front line fight. Someone who is in a tank right now, someone who is risking their life to save a child in another country. Are you kidding me? There is no justification for congressional salaries.  None. Demand congress lower their salries and their benefits to the same level that is offered to our soldiers, period. ”

“I’m going to take it a step further. Federal employees SHALL NOT be allowed to be ever to make more than [the average American salary] of $50,462. Ever”

Congress and employees of the federal government should only get raises when the citizens get raises. Members of congress should never make more than the soldiers who die in the battlefield. ”

“Congress I know you got a lot of special perks. Your medical care should be exactly the same as the VA hospital gives out. You are in ‘service’ of your country, if you don’t like it then maybe you should offer better benefits at the VA hospitals.”

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  • GINGER RUSSELL

    I totally agree that those serving in Congress should not receive more benefits than those on the front lines.

  • Jeremy OK

    I kind of agree. Although I really don’t think we should be giving people more incentive to go into the military, but the people who do that work deserve a lot more money. It is also a more communist policy. I’m not saying that I fucking hate communists, I’m just pointing out the irony since GLENN BECK IS PROPOSING IT. I also think that TV show hosts should only make as much as the average wage earner in his/her studio.

  • ronnie reagan

    Beck is oversimpifying the issue. My neighbors (husband and wife) are in the Navy and earn a combined 150k/year PLUS get a housing allowance that enables them to pay off their mortgage in 15 years while we schlep through on a 30 year mortgage that used to be interest only until we refi’d.

    As for federal employees, take a look at the cost of living in Washington DC. Avg US Single Family Home Price $177k. Avg Washington DC Single Family Home Price 550k. It costs A LOT more.

    As for congress, yep that’s a thorny issue, but I shudder to think about how susceptible congress will be to bribes and outside (read foreign) influences.

    There’s no doubt that many of our servicemen give so much more of themselves than they ever get back, but there are also many doing quite well.

    Sorry Glenn. Love your show, much to the chagrin and chastisement of my wife, but you’ve oversimplified the issue here.

    The real problem in this country are entitlement programs and wasteful projects going to buddies of congress, not salaries. Federal salaries make up a miniscule portion of the overall debt.

  • Adventure

    In addition to Ronnie Reagan’s comments, the average salary for the average American Citizen is no where near 50k. In fact, the average HOUSEHOLD income is closer to 50k.

    On top of that, it is reported Beck earned in excess of 32 MILLION last year… for what? Covering politicians.

    I suggest that Beck reduce his pay to match federal and congressional members and donate the rest to military families. Think he’s up for that?

  • Two people missed the poinr

    The point Beck made on his program, was that people working in the public SERVICE are no longer making the sacrifices that should come along with the job.

    A congressman could hardly call what they do serving their country anymore. It’s more like they landed a cushy job with excellent benefits and salary. Not least of all the potential to significantly increase their wealth while in office (nancy pelosi for one).

    And home values in DC Minght be through the roof, but no one says politicians can’t live in virginia or maryland and commute. Hell, renting an apartment or home isn’t so frigging crazy an idea either. It is not as though politicians should be planning on needing a place in DC for more than 4 years anyway, or are term limits a crazy idea as well?

    He is also dead on about how government employees salaries should not exceed the national average of American citizens. I am all people being able to go out and make as much as they can or what others are willing to pay them, but serving your country means sacrifice and that means in this case, if the average American citizen is doing well in the free market, the government employees may benefit as well. But if shit is bad for the rest of us the government workers suffer as well.

    And the whole nonsense about congressman being more suceptible to bribes with lower salaries, you are either naive or a moron. How could lobbyists bribe them any harder than they are already being bribed?

    And to the idiot statement about the navy couple doing alright for themselves, they would be considdered above average you pinhead.

    Also, ‘adventure’ IE socialist noob, Beck makes his money in the private sector so it’s no skin off our backs you jackass. Private citizens who pay taxes complaining about how much money the people our taxes employ are earning is common sense, jackass.

  • Scott

    According to Army Times, the E-4 pay for four years is 46,115.54, over twice what Beck claimed. He’s pretty much lying here.

  • http://wireupdate.com/wires/12372/glenn-beck-play-offense-by-demanding-the-restructure-of-congressional-pay/ Glenn Beck play offense by demanding the restructure of Congressional Pay » Breaking News | Wire Update News | News Wires -

    [...] “I think it is just time that we start playing a different game entirely – One that is not a game, one that is the truth,” Beck said before he outlined an idea he presented on his Fox News show on Friday. [...]

  • Mike Melander

    I agree that government pay needs to be aligned at better proportions, but living expense or per diem for the military should be included in the overall pay received by the military, including health ins. That should also be added into the government workers and congress members. This would probably raise the military wages closer to $50,000.00 and equal to the average family. If, when added to congress the figure goes up even more, which it will, we’re in worse trouble than you showed us.

  • Karl

    federal_pay_reform_petition
    1.The Max wage and benefits for a Elected Congressional service member is to be equal to a U.S.A. military service members Wage and benefits for equal years served.
    2.The max wage and benefits for Government employee shall not exceed the average non-union American Wage and benefits.
    http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/federal_pay_reform/

  • ThatCatGirl

    There are so many ppl who want to compare what Beck makes to what the politicians make. They’re not the same thing. Politicians suck of the teat of those busting their butts for a living. Beck, all media hosts, all sports figures, all entertainers.. etc… get paid privately.

    If you don’t like what a private sector figure makes, don’t buy the album, see the movie, go to the game or buy the commercial products. If you don’t like the fact that politicians live almost the same lifestyle as the ‘stars’, too bad, you are forced to pay… under severe penalty… for those lifestyles, even if you barely have enuf left of the $$$ you busted your butt for to give your own family.

    All your hard work, they take your money and use some of it for fancy dinners, cars, luxury housing and top medical. Refuse to pay for them to have it… they will fine you, maybe take your house and probably end up in jail.

  • captslomo

    And Beck is limited to the average income of a radio announcer in Dubuque, IA.

    Fair is fair. If he believes his message is truly so valuable, he’d do it for that kind of money.

  • Joe Brooks

    There is a difference – Beck is a private citizen. His salary doesn’t get paid by you or me through tax dollars. As for his staff – I hear his employees are treated very well.

  • Izzyboo

    I agree with glenn beck 100%.

  • Jimmy

    Does that $22,676/yr. factor in free housing, free food, free utilities, etc.? You’re
    comparing apples to oranges. What these military men and women are worth
    is incalculable. But, let’s be clear on what their true salary is.
    Congress will never be paid what a soldier is paid. Let’s get real…..But, why
    do they receive their salaries FOR LIFE? Why do their spouses continue
    to receive their salaries AFTER they DIE?
    You don’t sweep the steps from the bottom down. Removing entitlements
    must begin on the top step.

  • Lori_gooch

    Military does not get free housing, free food, and free utilities.  Nor do they get their salary for life.  Get your facts straight.  As a miltary spouse I should know.  We get an allowance for housing, but nothing else as you have described.  And including that allowance for housing my husband brings home less than the average American.  He deserves more than he gets. 

  • John

    Lori, Jimmy was referring to members of Congress. They get salaries for life.

  • Ashley31909

    On top of that i think Congress should have the same travel system the Military does. They should have to submit vouchers justify travel car use sleeping arangments and submit reciepts for every purchace made.They should be allowed per diem for the area they are traveling to. That alone probably would save a tremedous ammount of money.

  • Bobo

    No they don’t get “salaries for life”.  A Congressperson that’s been in office for 20 years gets a RETIREMENT CHECK (not a salary) of $50,000 a year for life.  That’s almost exactly what a military officer with over 20 years of service gets.  Fact.

  • Shequandathecrankygangster

    I think Glen Beck should have the same salary as a soldier.

  • Jstephensjugling

    I wholeheartedly agree – I will take it even one step further!  I am all for capitolism as long as it is reasonable!  For me, no ultra-wealthy ‘Wall Street’ capitalist tycoon would be allowed pay increases or bonuses unless the employee’s whose hard work, sweat & toil that actually did the real work and put the SOB there also receive comparable pay increases and bonuses! 

    Right now – our congressional leaders are at the beck and call of the ultra-wealthy elitists - they know it, I know it, we all know it!  It is sadly understood by most Americans over the age of 40 that for all the years that they been voting for a better government that it just will not happen!  Nothing ever seems to get better – only worse as the divide continues to grow between those who have and those who have not!  I can honestly say without a doubt in my mind that between our Washington leadership and Wall Street – one palm will grease the other.  Should congressional leaders leave or loose out in an election they go right back to work for the same capitolist they had protected while in office – it is a win win of all except the true American people!

    Perhaps the only people who really ever deserve the outrageous sums of money they receive are sports hero’s and entertainers.  After all, we very directly (by our stupidity) fork out the ridiculous amounts of money to see them do their thing!  With our CEO’s and congressional leadership – we are really kind of stuck.  For politicians – rules are in place to substantially protect the incombent candidate – for CEO’s they are protected by layers of management and usually a board of directors that usually shields them – about the only thing that can really move them is if they substantially screw up and it can be directly linked to them and bad press that will hurt the stockholders bottom line!

    That is about it!

    Jeff

  • Jstephensjugling

    I wholeheartedly agree – I will take it even one step further!  I am all for capitolism as long as it is reasonable!  For me, no ultra-wealthy ‘Wall Street’ capitalist tycoon would be allowed pay increases or bonuses unless the employee’s whose hard work, sweat & toil that actually did the real work and put the SOB there also receive comparable pay increases and bonuses! 

    Right now – our congressional leaders are at the beck and call of the ultra-wealthy elitists - they know it, I know it, we all know it!  It is sadly understood by most Americans over the age of 40 that for all the years that they been voting for a better government that it just will not happen!  Nothing ever seems to get better – only worse as the divide continues to grow between those who have and those who have not!  I can honestly say without a doubt in my mind that between our Washington leadership and Wall Street – one palm will grease the other.  Should congressional leaders leave or loose out in an election they go right back to work for the same capitolist they had protected while in office – it is a win win of all except the true American people!

    Perhaps the only people who really ever deserve the outrageous sums of money they receive are sports hero’s and entertainers.  After all, we very directly (by our stupidity) fork out the ridiculous amounts of money to see them do their thing!  With our CEO’s and congressional leadership – we are really kind of stuck.  For politicians – rules are in place to substantially protect the incombent candidate – for CEO’s they are protected by layers of management and usually a board of directors that usually shields them – about the only thing that can really move them is if they substantially screw up and it can be directly linked to them and bad press that will hurt the stockholders bottom line!

    That is about it!

    Jeff

  • http://www.facebook.com/docspadusmc Doc Spad

    Congressmen do NOT receive benefits for life, and neither do their wives… They receive the same benefits( including health care), as your mailman. They are covered under the same retirement/benefit plan as any federal employee…under the Federal Employee Retirement System. BTW.. they also pay into social security just as any employees does. Get your facts straight. And as far as Glenn is concerned…he’s a moron!!! Under his plan of only paying $22,676 per year…the oly people that could afford to run for congress would be rich already. You are asking someone to leave their job (and their existing benefit package), move to a city where the rents are outrageous. They do this with no contract or guarantee that they won’t be fired in 2 years. Does he leave his family back in his district and have to keep two homes??? My congressman leaves his family in the community he serves, sleeps in his office and gets home once every couple of weeks to spend time with his family and get close to his constituents. If you want congressmen that can do the job and not be in anyone’s pocket…you have to pay them a reasonable salary.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000028969441 Dan Long

    I would be satisfied if Congress could find the funds from the defense budget that were unaccounted for, but I guess that is not in their job description.  They just hand it out on a daily basis for $174,000 a year salary.  Doesn’t matter if hundreds of millions turn up missing to them.  They have plenty more where that came from!