One in Six Get Six-Figure Government Retirement Incomes
One Woman’s Opinion
By – Sheri de Grom
I’ve yet to meet a retired congressional representative or senator who referred to their retirement income as an entitlement.
I’m taking this opportunity to remind Congress that my retirement as a federal employee is governed by the same set of laws as their retirement. Why should they—members of the Congress of the United States—consider government employees, the military and social security recipients fair game for denial of cost of living increases or retirement benefit reductions?
If my performance as a federal employee had been similar to that of Congress over the past several years, I wouldn’t have had to worry about retirement. I would have lost my job and my retirement.
One in six congressional retirees currently earns annual pensions of a least $100,000. For some retired House Representatives and Senators, the perks of retirement are astounding.
In 2012, two retired lawmakers earned annuities of more than $200,000, until one died last year.
Seventy-nine of the four-hundred-sixty-three retired lawmakers still alive—or seventeen percent—get more than $100,000 in pensions annually.
Many lawmakers—almost all of them Republicans—have taken aim at federal employees’ pensions, introducing bills to reduce them or end them entirely. Many of those lawmakers overlook just how much more generous their pensions are and they haven’t considered doing away with their own retirement.
Lawmakers are able to retire far earlier than regular federal employees—sometimes after serving only five years in office.
Often civil service employees, the military and social security recipients will receive only a marginal cost-of-living adjustment or none, while Congress will award themselves upward of 5.8 percent. The larger adjustments for Congress have increased their annual salaries year after year and thus their retirement.
In my opinion, Congress needs to clean up their own playground and learn to get along with each other before they throw stones at rank-and-file retired federal employees, the military, and those receiving social security benefits.