The Congressional Management Foundation recognizes that Congress cannot ask Americans to sacrifice without making commensurate sacrifices themselves. But as the respective Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittees consider the 2015 budgets for member offices, consider the comment of a House staffer in response to the CMF survey: “Working in Congress is a way for me to serve my country. Congress needs smart and principled individuals who are willing to sacrifice some part of their lives ... to make our country work better, and I’m proud to be a part of that.”
If Congress continues on a course of continual cutbacks, how long do you think it can retain that kind of public servant?
Bradford Fitch is president and CEO of the Congressional Management Foundation and a former congressional staffer.
Terri Henderson, 6, center, whose mother is El Salvador, attends a rally with members of Congress at Union Station's Columbus Circle to announce the Restore Opportunity, Strengthen, and Improve the Economy (ROSIE) Act on July 29, 2014. The legislation provides incentives for government contractors to pay a living wage and other benefits that would help low-income workers.