Leading by example is always a good thing. It requires a person to actually put their money where their mouth is and in the case of Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) he's actually doing just that. As self-professed do-nothing Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has demanded that congressmen not receive payment during the government shutdown, but failed to actually see to doing that, Rep. Crenshaw wrote to the Chief Administrative Officer asking that his pay be withheld until after an agreement can be reached.
Crenshaw, a former Navy SEAL now representing Texas' 2nd Congressional District, lost his eye in an IED explosion during his third deployment to Afghanistan.
The Texas congressman declared Thursday that he would not be taking a paycheck until the security at the southern border is properly funded and the government shutdown ends.
"I cannot in good conscience get paid while federal employees' financial futures hang in the balance because of this partial government shutdown," Crenshaw wrote on Twitter. "I've asked the Chief Administrative Officer to withhold my pay until we have come to an agreement to adequately fund border security."
I cannot in good conscience get paid while federal employees’ financial futures hang in the balance because of this partial government shutdown. I’ve asked the Chief Administrative Officer to withhold my pay until we have come to an agreement to adequately fund border security. pic.twitter.com/2g37vAAtx2
— Rep. Dan Crenshaw (@RepDanCrenshaw) January 10, 2019
Now, this is the difference between someone who does and someone who just talks about doing. While Crenshaw is literally putting his money where his mouth is, people like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez can only talk about doing such things, but won't step forward to cut off her own pay.
Back in December, AOC tweeted, "Next time we have a gov shutdown, Congressional salaries should be furloughed as well. It's completely unacceptable that members of Congress can force a government shutdown on partisan lines & then have Congressional salaries exempt from that decision. Have some integrity."
Next time we have a gov shutdown, Congressional salaries should be furloughed as well.
It’s completely unacceptable that members of Congress can force a government shutdown on partisan lines & then have Congressional salaries exempt from that decision.
Have some integrity. https://t.co/BgueNNjf0f
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) December 22, 2018
OK, Ms. Cortez? How about that integrity? Oh wait, you're a Socialist. You don't have any integrity. It's all talk and theory with no reality.
I know this because I've dealt with lots of Marxists in real life and they are happy to tell you what sort of theories they have about society and economy and doing with your money, but when it comes to leading by example and doing it with their own money, they are MIA (Missing in Action). They are unwilling to give up their money and possessions for the sake of the "greater good" which they speak about.
However, it's not just Ocasio-Cortez.
More than a dozen congressmen have voluntarily declined their paychecks as Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) reintroduced the No Budget No Pay Act.
“I will not accept any pay during any government shutdown," Fitzpatrick said in a recent statement. "I am not delaying my pay; I am sending it back to the United States Treasury. And I am urging all my colleagues, both Republican and Democrat, to do the same. Let’s send a message to the extreme partisans on both sides: do your job or don’t get paid.”
“That's why I reintroduced my ‘No Budget, No Pay’ proposal to prevent members of Congress from being paid if Congress fails to pass a budget or allows a lapse in appropriations," he added. "This measure would dock pay for time without a budget as opposed to simply putting member salaries in escrow until end of term. It requires complete forfeiture.”
However, when it comes to Democrats, they are all too happy to keep being paid though they aren't actually doing their jobs.
Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA) said he won't be declining his paycheck during the shutdown.
“That’s an individual choice by a member of Congress but it’s also, frankly, a distraction from the real issue," Connolly said on Wednesday. "We are not in the business of adding to the ranks of the unpaid. We’re in the business of getting everybody paid fairly."
“This question gets asked, not only with respect to the shutdown, but shouldn’t you not be paid if you don’t pass a budget? Shouldn’t you not be paid if the DREAM Act isn’t passed? You know, go down your favorite list,” he added. “And the Constitution mandates it. We’re here doing our job. We’re here trying to reopen government. We respect individual choices but, frankly, we think that is a distraction from the issue here before us.”
PJ Media adds that other Democrats won't decline their payments either.
“I respect the ones who give it up and I don’t criticize them at all, but I also think we have to think about how not every member of Congress is wealthy. There are quite a few members of Congress who are living paycheck-to-paycheck too and a lot of them – I’m easy, I live right here – but so many of them sleep on their couches because they can’t afford to maintain a family back in Texas or New York or California and also afford a place here. The ones that do have places here tend to be four to an apartment. So, I think we need to provide a little cover for the people who can’t do that,” Beyer said.
“Part two is that gives Trump more leverage. You basically get the members of Congress who say, ‘now I really have to do it because I don’t have any money’ – that doesn’t make sense. It’s almost giving away some negotiating power. It makes no difference to him – that whole question to him, ‘Can you relate?’ Give me a break. This is a guy who has never had to worry about anything financial since the day he was born,” he added.
Beyer said Trump must not have read his own book,
The Art of the Deal, which he wrote with a ghostwriter. On the campaign trail, Trump often referenced the book and touted his ability as a dealmaker.
“But he’s not – what deal has he made in two years? Not one,” Beyer said. “He’s a bully and he wants it his way.”
Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-N.Y.) told PJM he would not join the lawmakers who are refusing their paychecks during the ongoing shutdown.
“Right now, no, I am not doing that,” Suozzi responded. “We should reopen the government. It’s unfair to the people whose lives are dependent on their paychecks to be going through this. It’s unsafe for America so that so many government agencies are not doing their work and it’s not just inconvenient, it’s unsafe in many instances. So let’s reopen the government and let’s make a deal once and for all to have comprehensive immigration reform that includes strong border security.”
Suozzi was asked if he supports the approach House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has proposed, which includes funding federal departments individually.
“Every department is important – we shouldn’t have them if they are not important. Even though you are not affecting by the inspections done by the Food and Drug Administration until a couple of month from now, there’s a lot of people that are getting hurt by this very badly,” Suozzi said. “Even though you are not affected by the people that are picking up the garbage at the national parks because you are not there yourself, that’s bad for the long term. There are a lot of things that are happening that are just bad things in people’s lives.”
Yet, when it comes to the government shutdown, often the average citizen is stepping up and doing the job better than government employees who are going to be paid eventually but not working currently. And they're doing it for free.
— AMYA Cleveland (@MKA_Cleveland) January 6, 2019
Right now: During the government shutdown, the National Mall has had issues with trash buildup amidst certain government workers not on duty.
— Ford Fischer (@FordFischer) January 6, 2019
While this should be a platform to talk about just how bloated, unconstitutional and economically inefficient the federal government has become, it's only becoming that among those who actually want smaller, limited, constitutional government.
Meanwhile, the Socialist and Communist congressmen and women are living it up on vacation in Puerto Rico. Who would have thought it?
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