by Sheri Urban
Socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) whined on Monday about the possibility that she may not get a $4,500 pay raise — which she downplayed as only being a cost of living adjustment — as she compared members of Congress to minimum wage workers.
Fox News’ Gregg Re reported that there has not been a cost of living adjustment for members of Congress for the past nine years and that Democrats in vulnerable states are worried about how a $4,500 pay increase will look during the next election.
Fox News’ Chad Pergram caught up with Ocasio-Cortez — who makes $174,000 per year —on Monday and asked her about the possibility that Congress would not get the pay raise.
“You know, it may not be politically popular to say, but honestly, this is why there’s so much pressure to turn to lobbying firms and to cash in on members service after people leave because, because precisely of this issue,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “So it may be politically convenient and it may make you look good in the short term for saying, ‘oh, we’re not voting for pay increases,’ but we should be fighting for pay increases for every American worker. We should be fighting for a $15 minimum wage pegged to inflation so that everybody in the United States with a salary, with a wage gets a cost of living increase.”
“Members of Congress, retail workers, everybody should get cost of living increases to accommodate for the changes in our economy and then when we don’t do that it only increases the pressure on members to exploit loopholes like insider trading loopholes to make it on the backend,” Ocasio-Cortez continued. “And that’s my issue, is that it’s superficial, you know, can vote against pay increases all you want, it’s in my opinion voting against a pay, voting against a, it’s not even like a raise, it’s a cost of living adjustment.”
“So, you can vote against a cost of living adjustment all you want and it’ll look good on its surface but it will, every cost-of-living adjustment that, that gets bypassed, is voting to increase the pressure to exploit loopholes and legal loopholes to kind of lean on other ways to enrich oneself through service,” Ocasio-Cortez concluded. “And so my whole side of it is like, it may not be optics, it may not be great optics, it may not like look the best in terms of your opponents could use it as a political, exploit as a political issue, but in substance, you might as well be transparent about a cost-of-living increase.”