October 4, 2022
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The $174,000 congressional salary is difficult on “working and middle class” lawmakers, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) asserted this week on Instagram.

“Only 10 women in the history of the United States have ever given birth while serving in Congress. 10,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote in a story posted to her Instagram, referring to the U.S. House of Representatives as a “hostile place to have a baby,” as vote schedules “pretty much” assume that no one has a family, as they change often and require frequent travel.

Not only that, Ocasio-Cortez complained, but there are thousands of dollars worth of out-of-pocket expenses.

“The job requires you to pay $25k+ in out of pocket work expenses that are NOT reimbursable or tax deductible, no housing allowance despite requiring you to pay for/rent 2 homes or else risk losing your job (hence the above huge work expenses), no included dental or vision insurance, no eligibility for PSLF, etc.,” she said, noting that her points are unpopular, citing “a lot of fake memes about Congress voting to give themselves pay increases.”

“But I assure you this is not true,” she said, wishing it were actually true as it would, she said, “allow more regular people to have and keep this job.”

While “huge numbers” of people in Congress are “independently wealthy,” Ocasio-Cortez said, the $174,000 congressional salary is difficult for the “working class members” who depend on it.

“The ones who actually rely on salary come from working and middle class backgrounds,” she said. “So b) it’s easy for wealthy members to vote AGAINST cost of living adjustments for the working class members to score political points, but then c) many will then engage in stock trading … because they know they’ve created an impossible $ situation and that’s how they work around it.”

“So basically if you’re a normal working person that comes into this job and refuses to do insider trading,” she continued, identifying herself as such, “then you are playing an already hard job on extra hard mode both personally and professionally.”

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