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Dems vow: No more cuts for federal workers ("discrimination" against RAT voters)
The Hill ^ | 2/29/12 | Mike Lillis

Posted on 02/29/2012 4:42:55 PM PST by Libloather

Dems vow: No more cuts for federal workers
By Mike Lillis - 02/29/12 07:21 PM ET

Leading Democrats charged Republicans this week with "discrimination" against federal workers amid Congress's struggle to cut deficit spending.

The Democrats said a series of federal pay cuts – most recently as part of the payroll-tax package – pile the deficit-reduction burden on one group of Americans while the rest of the country gets a free pass. The lawmakers – all of whom represent districts laden with federal workers – are vowing to oppose any future legislation that includes cuts in federal compensation.

"'Bureaucrats' is used as an epithet by too many [in Congress]. It is used as a pejorative," Rep. Steny Hoyer (Md.), the Democratic whip, said Wednesday during a Capitol Hill rally of the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU). "We are the best civil service in the world … Unfortunately, we have too many people who don't respect those who give their service to the public."

Sen. Ben Cardin of Maryland said the fight over federal compensation is part of a much larger partisan war over the preservation of the middle-class. Cardin, who was a member of the payroll-tax conference committee, accused Republicans of wanting "to turn back the clock" on workers' rights.

"They want to take [us] back to the 19th century," Cardin said.

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) suggested hundreds of NTEU members were "courageous" to visit the Capitol, which she characterized as "the scene of the crime against federal workers today."

"The Republicans have created a virtual piggybank containing your federal pay and your federal pensions – to be robbed at will," Norton charged. "We're here to say to Republicans, 'This piggybank is not yours.'"

As part of this month's bipartisan payroll-tax deal, GOP leaders insisted on a provision requiring federal employees hired after 2012 to contribute 3.1 percent of their annual salaries to their pensions — a 2.3-point jump over current levels. The provision is estimated to save roughly $15 billion over the next decade – money Congress tapped to offset an extension of emergency unemployment benefits through the end of the year.

An initial House-passed GOP bill would also have affected current federal workers, but push-back from Hoyer, Cardin and Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), another member of the payroll tax conference panel, caused GOP negotiators to scale back the provision.

The pension cuts come on the heels of a two-year freeze in federal pay, estimated to save taxpayers roughly $60 billion over a decade.

Advocates for federal workers say they're being singled out unfairly.

"The time has come for shared sacrifice, and we have already made our contribution," NTEU President Colleen Kelley said Wednesday. "These cuts need to stop."

Cardin noted that President George W. Bush inherited a projected budget surplus in 2001 and turned it into a $1.2 trillion projected deficit eight years later – largely the result of unpaid wars and unfunded tax cuts.

"It was not the federal workers who caused this deficit," Cardin said.

"Every time we need to find money to solve our problems, they keep coming back to you," echoed Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.). "It's almost like going out to dinner with a group of friends and you're always being asked to pick up the check."

Fueling the debate, a January study from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) found that federal employees, on average, are paid roughly 2 percent more than comparable private-sector workers – a figure that jumps to 16 percent when health and other benefits are considered.

Republicans pounced, using the report to support their federal compensation cuts.

"While millions of Americans continue to struggle with stagnant wages and high unemployment, government bureaucrats in Washington continue to enjoy significant advantages over those whose tax dollars finance their compensation," Rep. Paul Ryan, (R-Wis.), chairman of the House Budget Committee, said in response to the CBO report.

The Democrats on Wednesday defended the pay discrepancy. The problem is not that federal workers are overcompensated, they said, but that too many private-sector employees are denied fair wages and benefits.

"We're trying to give them a living wage – how awful that is," Hoyer quipped.

"Let's correct what they're doing in the private sector," Cardin added, "[not] race to the bottom."

Virginia Democratic Reps. Jim Moran and Gerald Connolly also addressed the union crowd Wednesday.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Extended News; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: cuts; dems; federal; workers
Things have gotten WAY out of hand. Time for a gubmint correction.
1 posted on 02/29/2012 4:43:01 PM PST by Libloather
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To: Libloather
RATS are vowing to oppose any future legislation that includes cuts in federal compensation.

Does that include active military and vets?

Knowing RATS I bet it doesn't.

2 posted on 02/29/2012 4:48:37 PM PST by SandRat (Duty - Honor - Country! What else needs said?)
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To: SandRat

Took the words right out of my mouth!


3 posted on 02/29/2012 4:52:42 PM PST by Pat4ever
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To: Libloather
Let's say we lay off half the federal workforce. That will make a huge cut in their total salaries, but make little change on a per employee basis.

No doubt there would be those hollering about that not having made any difference.

They'd also point to those additional laid off people, formerly federal workers, as more burden on the private sector ~ to wit, the cry of "See, more unemployed".

It's not a debate that can be won, so here's the solution. Privatize federal employment. Just sell it off through contracts.

4 posted on 02/29/2012 4:52:59 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: SandRat

Are they ok with welfare cuts then?


5 posted on 02/29/2012 4:55:34 PM PST by MNDude
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To: Libloather
I watched the MD delegation defend high living off the government LIVE on C-Span. I was enraged at their arrogance, their air of superiority over the rest of America.

I'm not a schadenfreude kind of person, but at that moment I wished the government rich DC suburbs all the prosperity of Detroit.

6 posted on 02/29/2012 4:57:05 PM PST by Jacquerie (No court will save us from ourselves.)
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To: Libloather

So I was in a meeting yesterday with Rob McKenna, AG and candidate for Gov in the state of WA. He said right now the State of Washington pays about $3B / year for medical coverage for state employees; this is about 10% of the total state budget. The cost is rising at about 10% / year, so in 7 years the cost will double.

This is of course unsustainable; you cannot have the state budget held hostage to cover the entire medical costs for a small part of the people. There are about 6.8M people in Washington State and about 100,000 full time and 54,000 part time state employees (122,000 FTEs).

http://www2.census.gov/govs/apes/10stwa.txt

This implies we (the tax payers) pay about $25,000 / year toward each state employee’s (and dependents) healthcare coverage.

So 1.8% of the population (in WA State) gets gold plated coverage and everyone else gets ObamaCare.

It just cannot be, how did this happen? Unless we get healthcare costs under control, insist state employees pay some portion of their premium/costs and insist on some free market reforms, all else is moot. Other federal medical insurance premiums are set to ruin us all, and time is quickly running out.

McKenna was quite impressive I would say, he really knew the issues.

schu


7 posted on 02/29/2012 4:57:22 PM PST by schu
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To: Libloather
"..while the rest of the country gets a free pass"

Are the Democrats effing joking?!!!!!

8 posted on 02/29/2012 4:58:57 PM PST by FedsRStealingOurCountryFromUs
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To: Pat4ever

This says is best.

I went into a public-’ouse to get a pint o’ beer,
The publican ‘e up an’ sez, “We serve no red-coats here.”
The girls be’ind the bar they laughed an’ giggled fit to die,
I outs into the street again an’ to myself sez I:
O it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, go away”;
But it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins”, when the band begins to play,
The band begins to play, my boys, the band begins to play,
O it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins”, when the band begins to play.

I went into a theatre as sober as could be,
They gave a drunk civilian room, but ‘adn’t none for me;
They sent me to the gallery or round the music-’alls,
But when it comes to fightin’, Lord! they’ll shove me in the stalls!
For it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, wait outside”;
But it’s “Special train for Atkins” when the trooper’s on the tide,
The troopship’s on the tide, my boys, the troopship’s on the tide,
O it’s “Special train for Atkins” when the trooper’s on the tide.

Yes, makin’ mock o’ uniforms that guard you while you sleep
Is cheaper than them uniforms, an’ they’re starvation cheap;
An’ hustlin’ drunken soldiers when they’re goin’ large a bit
Is five times better business than paradin’ in full kit.
Then it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, ‘ow’s yer soul?”
But it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll,
The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll,
O it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll.

We aren’t no thin red ‘eroes, nor we aren’t no blackguards too,
But single men in barricks, most remarkable like you;
An’ if sometimes our conduck isn’t all your fancy paints,
Why, single men in barricks don’t grow into plaster saints;
While it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, fall be’ind”,
But it’s “Please to walk in front, sir”, when there’s trouble in the wind,
There’s trouble in the wind, my boys, there’s trouble in the wind,
O it’s “Please to walk in front, sir”, when there’s trouble in the wind.

You talk o’ better food for us, an’ schools, an’ fires, an’ all:
We’ll wait for extry rations if you treat us rational.
Don’t mess about the cook-room slops, but prove it to our face
The Widow’s Uniform is not the soldier-man’s disgrace.
For it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Chuck him out, the brute!”
But it’s “Saviour of ‘is country” when the guns begin to shoot;
An’ it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ anything you please;
An’ Tommy ain’t a bloomin’ fool — you bet that Tommy sees!

-THE END-
Rudyard Kipling’s poem: Tommy


9 posted on 02/29/2012 5:00:12 PM PST by SandRat (Duty - Honor - Country! What else needs said?)
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To: muawiyah
You could fire the entire federal government and it would barely make in a dent in our march to be Greece!

It's entitlements ! (and the entitlement mentality!)
Not federal employees that are the problem!

10 posted on 02/29/2012 5:01:28 PM PST by Reily
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To: SandRat

No and good point. Maybe the Democrats will give ‘cutback exemptions’ to the gay members of our military. I mean, we can’t discriminate against them either! Looks like the only group left to NAIL is the heterosexual white humans that aren’t disabled and don’t have vaginas.


11 posted on 02/29/2012 5:04:23 PM PST by FedsRStealingOurCountryFromUs
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To: Libloather

I work for the G. This is my 2nd time around. If you count the Corps, it’s my 3rd stint. I swear by all that is holy, if the people knew about fed employees, they would (EVEN THE DEMOCRAT ONES) riot in the streets. I keep meaning to ask the mods to give me another identity here so I can post about my amazing experiences. See, I’ve accessed my account from work a few times, so, theoretically, my bosses can snoop me out. But if I get another account.... You’d be AMAZED!!!!!


12 posted on 02/29/2012 5:04:29 PM PST by Doctor 2Brains (If the government were Paris Hilton, it could not score a free drink in a bar full of lonely sailors)
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To: Reily
You are right about entitlements. EVERYTHING else pales in comparison, ENTs are THE financial killer, so it is true that feds are not THE problem, but paying illiterate bums huge sums with great benefits to sleep at their desks all day every day (slight exageration, sure) is A problem, believe me.
13 posted on 02/29/2012 5:07:56 PM PST by Doctor 2Brains (If the government were Paris Hilton, it could not score a free drink in a bar full of lonely sailors)
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To: Reily

You are right about entitlements. EVERYTHING else pales in comparison, ENTs are THE financial killer, so it is true that feds are not THE problem, but paying illiterate bums huge sums with great benefits to sleep at their desks all day every day (slight exaggeration, sure) is A problem, believe me.


14 posted on 02/29/2012 5:09:17 PM PST by Doctor 2Brains (If the government were Paris Hilton, it could not score a free drink in a bar full of lonely sailors)
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To: Doctor 2Brains
I keep meaning to ask the mods to give me another identity here so I can post about my amazing experiences.


15 posted on 02/29/2012 5:13:02 PM PST by Libloather (The epitome of civility.)
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To: SandRat

Excellent poem, Sandrat, hadn’t seen it before. Thanks for posting!


16 posted on 02/29/2012 5:14:30 PM PST by Pat4ever
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To: Doctor 2Brains
would those CIA guvies who died at Khost be included your calculus of guvies being illiterate bums?
17 posted on 02/29/2012 5:16:46 PM PST by Reily
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To: Libloather

“The Democrats said a series of federal pay cuts – most recently as part of the payroll-tax package – pile the deficit-reduction burden on one group of Americans while the rest of the country gets A FREE PASS.”

FREE PASS???!!! Words mean nothing to them. Perhaps most of those people have never had a job in the private sector before.


18 posted on 02/29/2012 5:17:09 PM PST by Clintonfatigued (A chameleon belongs in a pet store, not the White House)
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To: Libloather
Let the Fed workers opt out of the SEIU, so they can avoid paying dues, then.

Pictured below are "the people getting a free pass", and they pay NO TAXES, but recieve REFUNDS and REBATES when EITC, etc. is used to fill their pockets (in exchange for their voting for Democrats to keep 'em comin')


19 posted on 02/29/2012 5:18:50 PM PST by traditional1 (Don't gotsta worry 'bout no mo'gage, don't gotsta worry 'bout no gas; Obama gonna take care o' me!)
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To: Jacquerie
I watched the MD delegation defend high living off the government LIVE on C-Span. I was enraged at their arrogance, their air of superiority over the rest of America.

I'm in Maryland and I could not agree with you more. Cut the Federal jobs and programs in my state and let the rest of us stand a chance to live the way that we want and not have the one party rat rule that we currently have.

20 posted on 02/29/2012 5:20:05 PM PST by RedMDer (Forward With Confidence!)
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To: Doctor 2Brains

Dittos, I’m a postal clerk. The crap I see every single day amazes.


21 posted on 02/29/2012 5:21:52 PM PST by Crazieman (Feb 7, 2008 http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1966675/posts?page=28#28)
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To: Reily

What do you think, genius?


22 posted on 02/29/2012 5:25:30 PM PST by Doctor 2Brains (If the government were Paris Hilton, it could not score a free drink in a bar full of lonely sailors)
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To: SandRat
No.

But that is ok, according to some on this board all military retirees are millionaires.

23 posted on 02/29/2012 5:25:35 PM PST by Harmless Teddy Bear (Would you sing if someone sucked YOU up the vacuum cleaner hose?)
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To: Libloather

...But they have no problem raising retired military medical premiums by nearly 100%


24 posted on 02/29/2012 5:27:11 PM PST by Greenpees (Coulda Shoulda Woulda)
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To: Libloather

Whomever is keeping the list please make sure that clown hoyer is in the top 10.


25 posted on 02/29/2012 5:30:30 PM PST by samadams2000 (Someone important make......The Call!)
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To: Doctor 2Brains

I guess you do!


26 posted on 02/29/2012 5:30:59 PM PST by Reily
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To: Libloather

America is Reginald Denny and the Democrats are the L.A. Four.


27 posted on 02/29/2012 5:37:34 PM PST by bimboeruption (Clinging to my Bible and my HK.)
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To: Reily

That’s cause you’re so smart, AND a government loving liberal, I might add.


28 posted on 02/29/2012 5:38:09 PM PST by Doctor 2Brains (If the government were Paris Hilton, it could not score a free drink in a bar full of lonely sailors)
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To: Doctor 2Brains
yeah that's the ticket!....go with that!
29 posted on 02/29/2012 5:39:45 PM PST by Reily
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To: Crazieman

Yeah, the 1st time I was in, I was politically unaware, and doing NOTHING but chasing girls, and I was working for DOD, so I didn’t notice much, but now!!!! Good God! If you ain’t worked for the G, I simply don’t believe that you can grasp the horror of it all.


30 posted on 02/29/2012 5:40:59 PM PST by Doctor 2Brains (If the government were Paris Hilton, it could not score a free drink in a bar full of lonely sailors)
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To: Reily

YOU ARE A LIBERAL. You might be a liberal if you get upset when somebody refers to govermnent workers as bums. YOU ARE A LIBERAL.


31 posted on 02/29/2012 5:47:50 PM PST by Doctor 2Brains (If the government were Paris Hilton, it could not score a free drink in a bar full of lonely sailors)
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To: Doctor 2Brains

You got the brains! In fact you got two!
So it must be true!
You am I to argue.


32 posted on 02/29/2012 5:53:52 PM PST by Reily
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To: Reily

That’s actually pretty good. ‘Course I’m on my 3rd beer...


33 posted on 02/29/2012 6:05:48 PM PST by Doctor 2Brains (If the government were Paris Hilton, it could not score a free drink in a bar full of lonely sailors)
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To: Reily

YES...entitlements are the problem...but, what would happen to all those FED employees who FEED the entitled their bennies, and take care of them, and manage them, and administrate them, and PUSH their programs so there are MORE entitlements....????


34 posted on 02/29/2012 6:10:06 PM PST by goodnesswins (2012..."We mutually pledge our Lives, our Fortunes, and our Sacred Honor")
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To: Doctor 2Brains

Should be “Who am I to argue!”

too tired to continue the argument in any cogent form


35 posted on 02/29/2012 6:10:34 PM PST by Reily
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To: Reily
The theory is that if you whack the employees then the government can't spend money.

That, of course, is a remarkably stupid belief. Social Security, for instance, is operated mostly by the computers!

Now, are entitlements the problem? Depends on what you mean by an entitlement.

The problem is SPENDING.

36 posted on 02/29/2012 6:36:08 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: goodnesswins
The entitlement programs that are going to eventually eat up all future federal budgets like a giant demonic pacman is social security, medicare, medicaid, student loans as well as all the federal guarantees such as on mortgages, etc. None of these were advocated corporately by federal employees (meaning as a group!). I guess AFMSCE does advocate them now, but most of these have been in place long before there was any federal employee's union. These looming economic Armageddons were sold as “solutions” (usually to minor or nonexistent problems!) to the public at large and embraced for the most part enthusiastically.
.
All this ranting people do here about government employees I guess makes the ranters feel good, but the problem is the “something-for-nothing” views of a majority of the voters. Primarily its as Pogo put it, "We have met the enemy and it is us!"
37 posted on 02/29/2012 6:45:53 PM PST by Reily
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To: Jacquerie

“I watched the MD delegation defend high living off the government LIVE on C-Span. I was enraged at their arrogance, their air of superiority over the rest of America.”

And we all thought Illinois is bad! The People’s Republic of Maryland it essentially Washington D.C.’s bedroom. Take the USPO. They need to lay off at least 250,000 people! Unfortunately, those who are RIFed, will continue to live off the rest of us on pensions/medical benefits that are way out of line until they pass.


38 posted on 02/29/2012 7:42:08 PM PST by vette6387
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To: schu

“So 1.8% of the population (in WA State) gets gold plated coverage and everyone else gets ObamaCare.”

But not for long!! And we thought things here in California were bad! In reality, this is probably the same metric you will find in most of the states. It is unsustainable as you pointed out. The states will go bankrupt irrespective of what the Constitution says. When the money is gone, it’s gone!


39 posted on 02/29/2012 7:50:02 PM PST by vette6387
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To: Libloather
I have never understood the presumption that feds are donkey voters that politicians of both parties and most Freepers seem to take for granted. Something like 70% of feds work for DOD, Homeland Security and Justice. These are not agencies that harbor many social justice liberals. The overwhelming majority of feds I worked with for both Army and USAF were middle aged white males and they did were mostly in no sense liberals. The fed si-called unions mentioned here are joke organizations with no collective bargaining rights that matter in any way. The Dems don't want real unionization of the federal government anymore than the GOP. This is more inside the beltway theatrics.
40 posted on 02/29/2012 9:50:05 PM PST by robowombat
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To: Reily

I wasn’t really ranting about fed employees....although I have watched a good many people over the past 20 years take advantage of the system...ie post office jobs...much of the entitlements also are born in state programs. Like someone here said...Togo said...”We have met the enemy, and it is us”


41 posted on 02/29/2012 10:05:10 PM PST by goodnesswins (2012..."We mutually pledge our Lives, our Fortunes, and our Sacred Honor")
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To: Libloather
"The Republicans have created a virtual piggybank containing your federal pay and your federal pensions – to be robbed at will," Norton charged. "We're here to say to Republicans, 'This piggybank is not yours.'"

Talk about living in an alternate reality. This woman, as Ayn Rand might put it, could not grow a seed of wheat to save her own life, yet she engages in one of the grand instances of projection yet seen on the American political stage - accusing the victims of a robbery of being the real robbers.

A genuinely independent media could make a lot of money mocking idiots like Norton. She exists only because she is protected by the MSM from the consequences of her foolish utterances.

42 posted on 03/01/2012 6:48:21 AM PST by Mr. Jeeves (CTRL-GALT-DELETE)
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