Never a doubt in my mind that these politicians aren’t above those of us who pay their salaries, bills. With the financial situation our Country is in how can ANY of these politicians accept one penny more than it cost to do their job? How can they sleep at night knowing they have stolen from the tax payers with a ‘legal’ method? And without proper receipts for the money spent then it’s nothing more than legal theft. They just put it in their bank account and spend it on whatever.
I know that cigarettes have gone up in price, with the taxes they’ve imposed on tobacco products, but this little ‘expense’ account shouldn’t help him legally bypass the tax by using tax payer’s money to buy his smokes. You think he doesn’t?? Then you probably think Obama doesn’t buy his smokes from his ‘expense’ accounts. Sure, they all send their aides to the corner smoke shop and give them $50 to pick up a carton for them. The $50 comes out of their own salary, too. Sure it does.
And how about Princess Nancy when she would stock the bar with all those expensive liquors and ‘special’ foods for her airplane rides?
Is there really a ‘need’ to have an expense account for over indulgence for these people?
Boehner’s Monthly $2,000 Tab
As Minority Leader, the Ohio Republican had received a direct payment of $833 each month from taxpayers to cover “official expenses for leaders,” the same monthly total then-Majority Leader Steny Hoyer received.
But Boehner now receives a monthly $2,083.33 direct payment for expenses, according to the most recent expenditure reports from the Clerk of the House. Because the total of the expense payment is the same each month, it is apparently not reimbursement for individual itemized expenses.
Boehner’s office offered no details about how his monthly check is spent. Spokesman Michael Steel would only say, “This money is used in appropriate ways for expenses related to his official duties.”
While Congress has set aside $235,000 a year to cover the expenses of House and Senate leaders, Boehner now appears to be the only Member of the House accepting this money in direct payments each month.
Roll Call reported earlier this year that even as Congress has looked for budget-cutting initiatives, there appeared to be no effort to trim the annual budget for leadership expense accounts.
In the House, the expense accounts provide $25,000 to the Speaker, $10,000 each for the Minority and Majority Leaders and $5,000 each for the Whips.
The boost in Boehner’s expense account is in addition to the $30,000 increase in the base pay that he began to collect in January after becoming Speaker. According to the Congressional Research Service, the Minority Leader’s salary was $193,400 last year. This year’s Speaker salary is $223,500.
That means between his pay and his expenses, Boehner saw his annual checks jump from $203,400 to $248,500 in January, an increase of about 22 percent.
Senate disclosures offer less detail than House financial reports, so there is no way to tell how Senate leaders receive their expense payments. But in recent years, both Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) appear to have used the leadership expense accounts to cover “supplies and materials” and other office expenses.
- June 8, 2011, Midnight