Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., on Thursday introduced a bill (H.R. 1012) that would cut lawmakers'salaries by 10 percent, effective in January 2013. The legislation also would mandate a 10 percent reduction in pay for the president and vice president.
"We've voted to reduce our massive deficit by billions in order to create a better environment for job creators -- but we haven't cut a dime from our own paychecks," said Beutler. "The savings ought to start with us."
The president and vice president receive $400,000 and $230,700 each year, respectively. Rank-and-file members of Congress earn $174,000 annually, while party leaders make more. Lawmakers determine their own pay, but have voted not to raise member salaries since 2009.
President Obama in November 2010 announced a two-year pay freeze for all federal civilians, a provision supported in his fiscal 2012 budget proposal. Some lawmakers have called for additional pay cuts, including a freeze on step increases and bonuses, while conservative analysts are advocating for a pay system that brings federal salaries in line with the private sector.