Law Religion Culture Review

Exploring the intersections of law, religion and culture. Copyright by Richard J. Radcliffe. All rights reserved.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Fun with Refunds.

Would you be surprised if Congress passed a law requiring them to forfeit their pay for failing to show for work (unless there is an illness)? Check out the following federal statute:

"The Secretary of the Senate and the Chief Administrative Officer of the House of Representatives . . . shall deduct from the monthly payments (or other periodic payments authorized by law) of each Member or Delegate the amount of his salary for each day that he has been absent from the Senate or House, respectively, unless such Member or Delegate assigns as the reason for such absence the sickness of himself or of some member of his family." (2 U.S.C. ยง 39.)

According to a new National Taxpayers Union study, the Top 5 Congressional absentees were John Kerry (146 days missed, $90,933 overpaid), Richard Gephardt (131, $81,363), John Edwards (102, $63,543), Joe Lieberman (63, $38,829), and Luis Gutierrez (42, $26,198). (Hat tip: TaxProf Blog.)