Lobbying and special interests influence is as old as the country itself. The very founding of our nation hinged on appeasing the various interests in each of the states. However, the Framers of the Constitution knew that rotation in office was necessary in order to prevent corruption of the government.
Today, the members of Congress enjoy salaries and benefits that were unheard of during the birth of our nation. What started as public service in the interest of the people has now evolved into a lifelong career replete with powers and riches. The numbers are shocking.
The median networth for a member of Congress is over $1 million.
The average American household median net worth is less than $60,000.
Congressional pay is $174,000 per year.
Their retirement account contributions are matchued up to 5% per year. All taxpayer funded.
Congress members are eligible for a pension worth up to 80% of their salary.
If they are 62+, they can take a pension as soon as completing 5 years of service.
Average Social Security recipient will get $15,000 a year in benefits.
Public workers' pensions average about $26,000.
A retired member of Congress who served 20 years will average $59,000 annually in pension benefits.
Members of the House receive a $900,000 annual allowance for staff and a separate $250,000 budget for travel and office costs.
Senators receive an allowance close to $3.3 million for staff and office expenses.
All of the above are paid by taxpayers.
Lobbying is any communication between a client and a member of the government. Historically, money has poured into lobbying to influence policy and support PACs for incumbent reelection campaigns.
Amount spent on lobbying in Washington in 2017.
A seven-year high.
Increase in annual lobbying spending in 2017 in comparison to 2016.
Increase in annual lobbying spending by the biggest special interest in 2017 over 2016.1
Every day new stories tell of how lobbying and special interest groups pump money into PACs and campaigns of career politicians. Allegations of insider trading and questionable business dealings cast more suspicion that members of Congress are only in office to serve themselves.
It’s time to restore honor and integrity to Congress. Join us in our fight to impose term limits, and let’s return our democracy to the people. Please sign the petition and contribute to our campaign bring about Constitutional Change Now!