President Donald Trump is frustrated with Congress’ absolute refusal to entertain any notion of fiscal responsibility, so he’s taking action himself. On Thursday, the president announced he would cancel a scheduled 2.1 percent across-the-board pay raise for federal workers.
“In light of our Nation’s fiscal situation, Federal employee pay must be performance-based, and aligned strategically toward recruiting, retaining, and rewarding high-performing Federal employees and those with critical skill sets,” Trump wrote in a letter to House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wisc.
Democrats like Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., are attacking Trump for “cutting pay,” because only in Washington D.C. is not giving the government a raise a pay cut.
.@realDonaldTrump spends millions of taxpayer $ playing golf at his own resorts & hands out over a trillion in tax giveaways to rich buddies – but he wants to cut pay for hard-working Americans who care for vets, support military operations, & inspect our food? I'll be voting no. https://t.co/Ga6KzqB3Pk
— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) August 31, 2018
To the hard-working federal employees Trump just screwed by cutting pay — the folks who run our parks, protect our communities, & serve our veterans: YOU MATTER. If billionaires can get tax cuts, you should get a COLA. You work hard for America & that should add up to something.
— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) August 30, 2018
After ballooning spending & the deficit with a $1.5-trillion tax cut bill for corporations and the well connected, the President now wants to add insult to injury by slashing the pay of federal employees and families.
— MichelleLujanGrisham (@RepLujanGrisham) August 31, 2018
.@realDonaldTrump's proposal to pay for his huge tax cut by slashing pay for federal workers is jaw-dropping hypocrisy, even by this admin’s standards. Congress must ensure that our nation’s federal workforce receives the support they need.
— Senator Mazie Hirono (@maziehirono) August 31, 2018
Unacceptable that after signing a GOP tax bill that gave away tens of billions in corporate tax cuts & added $1 trillion to the debt, President Trump cites the need for government belt-tightening in his decision to slash a pay increase for federal workers https://t.co/cfcmLU7f40
— Senator Chris Coons (@ChrisCoons) August 30, 2018
Trump says he has the authority to cancel raises for federal workers when there is “national emergency or serious economic conditions affecting the general welfare.” Congress, however, can override the decision in spending legislation, if it so chooses. And it’s likely Congress will override Trump. Lawmakers have already demonstrated a commitment to wildly increasing federal spending, ignoring the $21 trillion national debt.
Why stop now?
Chris Pandolfo is a staff writer and type-shouter for Conservative Review. He holds a B.A. in politics and economics from Hillsdale College. His interests are conservative political philosophy, the American founding, and progressive rock. Follow him on Twitter for doom-saying and great album recommendations @ChrisCPandolfo.
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