Rep. Tipton trying to stop congressional pay increases

U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, left, R-Colo., said the biggest surprise of his first term was tension between the Republican-controlled House and the Democratically controlled Senate, where legislation he backed has languished after he pushed it through the House.

U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Colo., is backing legislation that would reject President Barack Obama’s executive order for pay increases for Congress.

The measure would extend the congressional pay freeze for the full 113th Congress. A provision of the recent fiscal-cliff agreement limited the pay freeze to one year.

The measure, H.R. 54, wouldn’t affect pay increases Obama set in an executive order.

The increases for Vice President Joe Biden and top-level federal officials will be unaffected by the legislation.

“Most of the people in my district are not getting raises in this economy, in fact, they’re doing everything they can just to pay the bills and keep their families afloat,” Tipton said in a statement.

“Many are struggling to find work at all with real unemployment around 20 percent in communities like Grand Junction and Pueblo.”

Real unemployment refers to state-generated figures reflecting a combination of the unemployment rate, the number of people working part-time who want full-time work, and the number of people who have left the workforce but still wish to be employed.

A congressional pay increase would run counter to his goals of controlling spending and reducing the size of government, Tipton said.

Obama’s executive order lifted an existing freeze on salaries for federal employees to allow a 0.5 percent across-the-board pay increase in the first pay period after March 27, 2013.


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