Video: Do Energy employees get too many holidays? One lawmaker thinks so.
- March 15, 2012
Rep. Cliff Stearns, R-Fla., said he supports eliminating the Energy Department and noted he did not take time off for holidays such as Presidents Day when he was operating motels and restaurants.
Video of a February 25 town hall meeting published by ThinkProgress, a liberal website, shows Stearns initially suggesting Energy's budget should be cut in half and later agreeing with a questioner that the agency could be eliminated entirely.
Noting that the Energy Department did not exist before President Jimmy Carter created it, Stearns suggested the agency is not earning its keep.
"What are they doing to make us energy independent?" he asked.
"They’ve got thousands and thousands of employees," he said. "Every one of you would like to have one of their jobs. They start anywhere from $50,000 to $75,000 [a year]. You’ve got a thrift savings account. You’ve got health care. You’ve got -- You get off all these legal holidays."