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Saturday, August 13, 2011

Are You Fed Up Yet? How About An Amendment to Make Congress More Accountable?

Susan M. Graham, Certified Elder Law Attorney

I received this suggestion from a friend today, and I thought it might resonate with some of you.

The 26th Amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took only 3 months and 8 days to be ratified!  Why?  Simple!  The people demanded it.  That was in 1971...before computers, before e-mail, before cell phones, etc.

Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took one year or less to become the law of the land...all because of public pressure.

Here is a suggested amendment:

Title:  Congressional Reform Act of 2011.

1.  No Tenure/No Pension.  A Congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.

2.  Congress (past, present and future) participates in Social Security.  All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately.  All future funds flow into the Social Security system and Congress participates with the American people.  It may not be used for any other purpose.

3.  Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.

4.  Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise.  Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

5.  Congress loses their current health care system and participate in the same health care system as the American people.

6.  Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.

7.  All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void effective January 1, 2012.

The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen.  Congressmen made all these contracts for themselves.  Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career.  The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back to work.

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