December 13, 2010
Freezing the pay of federal workers isn’t a real solution to closing the budget deficit.
Political ploy scapegoats federal employees
Last week, President Obama jumped aboard the bandwagon in a “race to the bottom” on wages. Their goal seems to be blaming workers in the federal government – the border patrol agent making only $34,000 a year or the nursing assistant at the VA who makes just $28,000 a year – for our federal budget woes.
The reality is freezing the pay of federal workers will result in a net savings of just $2 billion next year – a drop in the bucket compared to the nation’s $1 trillion deficit in 2009.
Meanwhile, the President and Congressional Republican leaders have reached a deal to extend Bush-era millionaire tax cuts – without paying for them – at a cost of $700 billion over ten years (plus another $130 billion in interest on that debt).
The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) has created a way for you to send a message to your member of Congress to oppose cutting workers’ wages to afford Wall Street bailouts and millionaire tax cuts:
Congress needs to develop, pass and fund a comprehensive plan to create good jobs and get our economy moving again. That’s the best way to take a big chunk out of the national deficit. Freezing federal pay isn’t a plan. It’s a political ploy that scapegoats federal employees.
We hope that Congress does not cave to the political pressure to cut federal wages at the same time that millionaires on Wall Street get bailouts, huge bonuses, and their tax cuts, too.
A two-year freeze for federal workers is bad for the middle class, bad for the economy, and bad for business. No one is served by our government participating in a “race to the bottom” in wages. We need to invest in creating jobs, not undermining the ones we have. It is time to get our nation back on track, but we should not do so by placing an even greater burden on workers and their families.