WASHINGTON -- Failure to pass a budget should cost congressmen their pay, according to U.S. Rep. Scott DesJarlais, the man who will represent Marshall County if he's re-elected in November.
DesJarlais, a Republican, on Tuesday signed onto a bill by Rep. Jim Cooper, a Democrat, to deny congressional pay if Congress fails to pass its budgeted appropriations bills on time. "The No Budget, No Pay Act" would prohibit members from receiving pay after missing deadlines for budget and appropriations bills.
Furthermore, it would deny retroactive pay.
Tuesday was the 1,000th day, almost three years, since the Senate passed a budget. Cooper's bill is sponsored by Republican Sen. Dean Heller of Nevada.
"Any family or business owner in my district will tell you that the first step to financial success is creating a budget," DesJarlais said. "The same holds true to running the federal government. It is simply impossible to get our nation's unsustainable spending under control without a long-term plan in place.
"As the first member of the Tennessee delegation to sign onto this bipartisan legislation, I look forward to working with Rep. Cooper to further this commonsense proposal and I applaud him for introducing a bill that puts people before politicians."
Cooper wrote the legislation to motivate congressmen to be more fiscally responsible on when a complete budget is enacted and sent to the President.
"Because America's credit rating is threatened, Congress cannot afford to be late paying its bills," Rep. Cooper said. "Threatening to stop paying Congress is the surest way to make sure we beat the annual Oct. 1 deadline. Congress must get its work done, or get no paycheck."