Friday, August 12, 2011


I rarely open “forwarded” emails. It depends on the sender and the description in the “Subject Line”. Here is an item that was recently forwarded by a reliable long-time friend and client -

Congressional Reform Act of 2011

1. No Tenure / No Pension. A Congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.

2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security. All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.

3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.

4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

5. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.

7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void effective 1/1/12. The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen. Congressmen made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back to work.

It does provide some food for thought. Here is some of what I have been thinking -

Members of Congress should not receive a “defined benefit” government pension, funded by “employer contributions” from the United States Treasury. Social Security and Medicare taxes should be withheld from their wages. They should be able to contribute a portion of their salary to a 403(b) plan (with no “employer” match) and a 457 deferred compensation plan.

I do agree that Congress should not be able to vote for their own pay raises. Pay increments for “Congresscritters” should be liked to the CPI and be the same as the increments for Social Security beneficiaries and other government “employees”.

Members of Congress should be able to participate in the same health care plan as other government “employees” during their term in office only, but should be required to contribute toward the cost of the plan, as most non-government employed Americans currently do. When they leave office they should be able to buy health insurance from the government for a limited period of time, a la COBRA.

Congresspersons should obviously abide by all the laws of the land, and be subject to the same penalties as “normal” Americans if they break these laws. They should be subject to the same monetary penalties and possible jail time as the rest of us if they cheat on their taxes (i.e. Geithner and Rangel). A mere slap on the wrist and being told you are a bad boy in front of the class, when any other taxpayer would serve a jail sentence, is not acceptable.

A “Congresscritter”, or government official, cheating on his/her taxes is like an employee stealing from his/her employer. Those who do should be automatically and immediately removed from office or fired.

While the forward does not mention the issue, perhaps there should be term limits on the idiots in Congress. A total of 12 years is plenty of time for one individual to screw the American public.

What do you think?

BTW, here is another Congress-related “forward” I recently received -

Having already downed a few power drinks, she turns around, faces him, looks him straight in the eye and says,

"Listen here, good looking, I will screw anybody, anytime, anywhere, their place, my place, in the car, front door, back door, on the ground, standing up, sitting down, naked or with clothes on . . . It doesn't matter to me. I just love it."

His eyes now wide with interest, he responds,

‘No kidding... I'm in Congress too. What state are you from?’"



Mary Lew Kehm, CPA said...

Congress DOES pay into Social Security currently. See Q. 5 on this SSA website.

And Congress does contribute to their health insurance. See

Hopefully some of the other statements in the post are accurate -- don't have time to check them all. We have many problems in this country, and those who discuss solutions need to be careful to be as factual as possible.

Robert D Flach said...


Thank you for providing the information.

If what you say is true than I am pleased to know that some of what I would like to have been true is already true.

My post was just a general response to the forwarded email I received, with thoughts on what I thought should be.

Thanks again for providing me with the information.