James Leroy Wilson's blog

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

What About the 27th Amendment?

Woo hoo! Republicans blocked a Congressional Pay Raise this year.

What's interesting is that the article never brought up the 27th Amendment:

No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened.

Congress denied themselves a Cost-of-Living-Adjustment this year because it was politically unwise to do so. But they can't not know about the 27th Amendment. They are prohibited from accepting yearly raises, yet they've accepted raises every year until this year since the 27th Amendment was ratified.

If Congress ignores something so simple as the 27th Amendment, and we the people let them get away with it, is it that surprising the Congress will also ignore other provisions of the Constitution?

This is a simple litmus test. A member of Congress can vote for a raise for members of the next session of Congress, but not members of the current session. Any member who thinks otherwise is too stupid or too unethical to be trusted.

Someone who's wrong on the 27th Amendment is guaranteed to be wrong on a lot of other things.


  1. LoganFerree8:51 AM PST

    Not exactly, they are getting cost of living adjustments and the like under a law that they've passed previously. The law, passed several years ago, took one session to go into effect. But once it's in effect, it's a way to basically go around the spirit of the 27th Amendment.

  2. If our economy was deflationary, we wouldn't likely see Congress getting a cost-of-living "adjustment." What Congress is getting is an increase, a "variation in compensation." In principle, an inflation-adjusted salary is not unreasonable, but they could easily pass a cost-of-living increase to take effect every two years.