Apr 07, 2011 8:09 PM GMT
At least Congressman Sean Duffy had 5 kids and wasn't paid for half of last year.
With 8.8 percent unemployment across the country and more than 8 million people claiming unemployment benefits, one California congresswoman wants people to know they’re not the only ones facing financial hardship. Who else might be? The lawmaker herself.
In an appearance on MSNBC Thursday, Democratic California Rep. Linda Sánchez talked about the downsides of a federal government shutdown. Some lawmakers, to the seriousness of the issue, have said they would forgo their paychecks in the event of that shutdown. Sanchez explained she just can’t afford to go along with that idea.
“I have to tell you that I live paycheck-to-paycheck, like most Americans,” Sánchez said. “I’m still paying off my student loans. I have a 2-year-old son who I have to support, and I have to maintain residences on both coasts. It’s very difficult for me to say, ‘Hey, I can give up my paycheck,’ because the reality is, I have financial obligations that I have to meet on a month-to-month basis that doesn’t make it possible for me.”
Members of Congress receive an annual salary of $174,000, whereas the median household income for American is a little over $46,000 annually. Nonetheless, Sánchez said it is really tough for her to stretch her paycheck that covers everything.