CNN keeps count: Congress gets paid, but who's keeping their paycheck?
October 3rd, 2013
09:25 AM ET
11 months ago

CNN keeps count: Congress gets paid, but who's keeping their paycheck?

(CNN) – While more than 800,000 federal workers, including some congressional staffers, are being furloughed during the government shutdown, members of Congress are still getting paid, as required by law.

But some members of the House and Senate–the very bodies that failed to prevent the shutdown–are giving away their salary in solidarity.

CNN reached out to all 533 current members of Congress about their paycheck plans.

As of Thursday at 5:00 p.m., the tally showed 32 senators are donating to charity or the Treasury Department, while nine are not accepting a paycheck and two are undecided.

Two senators, Tom Coburn, R-Oklahoma and Chris Murphy, D-Connecticut, told CNN they plan to keep their salary.

On CNN's Crossfire, Coburn said that he plans to keep his salary and "spend it and tithe it and give to it charities and do the things that I've always done."

In the House, 47 representatives say they're donating to charity or the Treasury, while 65 are not accepting a paycheck and two are undecided.

Seven House members, however, say they're keeping their salary– Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Florida; Rep. Danny Davis, D-Illinois; Rep. Todd Rokita, R-Indiana; Rep. William 'Lacy' Clay, Jr., D-Missouri; Rep. Howard Coble, R-North Carolina; Rep. Susan Brooks, R-North Carolina; Rep. Renee Ellmers, R-North Carolina.

"I need my paycheck. That’s the bottom line,” Ellmers told North Carolina station WTVD in a phone interview. “I understand that maybe there are members who are deferring their paychecks and that's admirable," said Ellmers. "I'm not in that position."

Here are our numbers in two interactive spreadsheets:

Government shutdown: Senators gets paid, but who's keeping their paycheck?

Government shutdown: House gets paid, but who's keeping their paycheck?


Filed under: Congress • Government Shutdown
soundoff (728 Responses)
  1. Cal

    So now we can narrow down the ones who can "afford" to "forgoe" their pay. . . And the ones who actually need the pay to help the little folks who are really struggling.

    October 3, 2013 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  2. Jim Brody

    OK, save us siome trouble. How about a list of those who did not answer CNN's quiery about thier intentions.

    October 3, 2013 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  3. Ashley

    Their pay is protected under the 27th amendment they will all be paid regardless.

    October 3, 2013 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  4. travelone

    No work no pay... and a 30 pec permanent pay cut for all of them plus loss of pension benifits

    October 3, 2013 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  5. ss

    These overpaid "servants of the people" need to suck it up and use obamacare. If it is good enough to force on the people then congress, especially the senate should be forced to use the insurance exchanges. Obama should should be first in line.

    October 3, 2013 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  6. theala

    How do you not accept a paycheck when pay is distributed by Direct Deposit for all federal workers and has been for a couple of decades now, at least?

    I'm not impressed with the donations to charity if the donors claim the donation on their tax returns: some donation.

    My congressman is one of the ones who is keeping is paycheck (Coble of NC). I'm glad I didn't vote for him, now more than ever.

    October 3, 2013 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  7. inandywetrust

    I'm pretty fed up with both parties. I think it's a time for a change. . . Ballots or (god forbid) Bullets.

    October 3, 2013 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  8. Tampa Tim

    Just a few days ago, GA repub rep Phil Gingrey was crying about $175,000 a year is not enough for him to live on. Republicans need to donate 5 years of their salary for screwing up our country, not just a paycheck.

    October 3, 2013 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  9. Disgusted!

    Here is an idea! Fire them all and start over!

    October 3, 2013 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  10. daveinla

    WHOOP, WHOOP, Louisiana!!!! The only state where 0... Z-E-R-O citizens signed up for socialist health care.

    October 3, 2013 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  11. John Gordon

    Hey Republican CNN ! Would not print my CLEAN observations of COBLE AND BURR .BACK to Fox where they have guts . Where is Burr ?Can you answer that at least?

    October 3, 2013 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  12. DT2013A

    Man please, I heard from a few government employees affected by the "shut down" that they will get retro pay for days not worked due to it. So they pretty much get free vacation days.

    Once again it's some stupid ploy to get us in a frenzy but really no one is really hurting. bunch of crap! I am tired of these stupid antics and politics that are being played. Keep the government shut down fire everyone.

    October 3, 2013 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  13. Ghung

    Conspicuously absent: Mark Meadows (R-NC dist 11), "The Mastermind of the Shutdown" (CNN) aka: Western North Carolina moderates latest nightmare.

    October 3, 2013 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  14. bassmaster22

    Folks, congress didn't get furlowed and then continued to be paid. They are still working. You get paid when you work. Too bad if you don't like what they are doing. I don't like what they are doing but they are still working.
    Now, if they get sent home and stop working then, yes, it's time to not get paid. Literally .002% of the population has been furlowed. If your congressman was making decisions based on that amount of people on any other topic, you'd be pretty upset.
    Stop falling in to these silly arguments and look at the big picture here. Think. Then post.

    October 3, 2013 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  15. Anonymous

    why not donate the checks to the people u are making work without a check! (like the ones at the social security offices!) we show up everday and do out job and have not been told if we will have a check for all the hours we r working without pay!

    October 3, 2013 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  16. juan

    Where is Ted Cruz name on the list no where to be seen he is a joke to this nation.

    October 3, 2013 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  17. Dave

    pathetic... these congressmen are "donating" their salaries... do any of you realize that means its a tax write-off for them? meaning they actually make out in the long run...

    October 3, 2013 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  18. Larry282

    As I expected, I don't see our radical congresswoman Marsha Blackburn on any list for anything. Her only interest is to bring the country to an end. Typical of the extreme right wing meat balls only thinking of themselves NOT THE PEOPLE!

    October 3, 2013 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  19. Bud

    Who cares about this?... CNN is really losing it.

    October 3, 2013 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  20. dl

    Wnna see quick change? Kill their health & pension benefits alltogether & permanenetly

    October 3, 2013 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  21. Sharon Anderson

    Thank you, Federal Government for showing the world how petty you can be. Your mega mansions and luxury sports cars may keep you comfortable, but the threat of starvation or eviction for many looms darkly.

    October 3, 2013 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  22. David Green

    Haven't herd one of them offer to donate or create a fund to pay the 800K people furloughed.
    They get to choose were the money goes and the 800000 have no choice in there loss of wages.
    Hurry for the Pro Life Movement, Planned Parenthood and any charities that these d-bags deem reputable.
    You can bet that they will taunt how great they and their party are cause they chose to help X why the other party left all those needed people stranded.

    October 3, 2013 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  23. Brandon

    I don't care if they don't accept their pay checks, they should be removed from office for letting it happen at all.

    October 3, 2013 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  24. JeffC

    Name me one other job where you can consistently get below 20% on your annual reviews for years in a row and keep your job? Name me one other job where you can not do the basic functions of your employment and still get pay and benefits?

    October 3, 2013 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  25. toybuilt77

    It's like them setting a fire to your home and then congratulating themselves for putting it out. However, they haven't even put the fire out... they simply escaped the fire themselves. These nutjobs need a reality check.

    October 3, 2013 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
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