News & Politics

Ocasio-Cortez: Lawmakers and 'All Workers Should Get Cost of Living Increases' in Pay

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., addresses the Road to the Green New Deal Tour final event at Howard University in Washington, Monday, May 13, 2019. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

WASHINGTON — Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) has expressed support for raising congressional salaries.

Last week, House Democratic leaders had considered lifting the pay freeze that’s been in place since 2009, which would have raised pay for members by $4,500 from the current $174,000 annual salary. Top Democrats have reportedly abandoned the proposal, which would have been part of the $1 trillion budget that’s being considered in the House.

“What this does is punish members who rely on a straight salary, and reward those who rely on money loopholes and other forms of self-dealing. For example, it incentivizes the horrible kinds of legislative looting we saw in the GOP tax scam bill,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted on Tuesday.

“Voting against cost of living increases for members of Congress may sound nice, but doing so only increases pressure on them to keep dark money loopholes open. This makes campaign finance reform *harder.* ALL workers deserve cost of living increases, incl min wage,” she added.

Ocasio-Cortez said that “all workers” should receive annual cost of living increases.

“It’s not a fun or politically popular position to take. But consistency is important. ALL workers should get cost of living increases. That’s why minimum wage should be pegged to inflation, too. Voting against cost of living increases is 1 reason why dark $ loopholes stay open,” she wrote on Twitter.

“In democratically socialist businesses (like worker co-ops) or methods (like collective bargaining) you actually CAN vote for a worker pay increase. Many do! We can’t pass these laws bc of big money. This is how you chip at it. Like I said, it’s not popular but I’m being 100,” she also tweeted.

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