Congressman Jim Cooper

Representing the 5th District of Tennessee
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Cooper Introduces No Budget, No Pay in 114th Congress

Jan 7, 2015
Press Release

WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) today introduced bipartisan legislation that would stop congressional pay if Congress doesn’t pass America’s budget bills on time.

A longtime advocate for congressional reform, Cooper first introduced No Budget, No Pay in 2011 after a Nashville constituent asked why Congress can ignore budget and tax deadlines while the public has no such luxury.

“Congress should pay its bills on time,” Cooper said. “Otherwise, it should work for free.”

Congress overwhelmingly passed a watered-down, one-year version of No Budget, No Pay in 2013. That year, the House and Senate passed individual budgets for the first time in four years.

No Budget, No Pay would halt paychecks for all House and Senate members if they miss annual deadlines for budget and appropriations bills. No Budget, No Pay would prohibit members from receiving pay for each day past Sept. 30 that budget and spending bills don’t pass.

Members would not be allowed to recover the pay retroactively.

Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) introduced the No Budget, No Pay Act in the Senate.

While the House and Senate recently passed their own budgets, Congress has not adopted a budget for America in five years. Meanwhile, it has been 18 years since all appropriations bills were passed on time.

Cooper today introduced No Budget, No Pay in the House with Reps. Reid Ribble (R-WI), Ami Bera (D-CA) and Ron DeSantis (R-FL).

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