Video of the Day: Cain Proposed Cutting Congressional Salaries

By Chris Good

In 2004, Herman Cain ran for U.S. Senate in Georgia as an insurgent political outsider ... just like he's doing right now on the presidential stage. Today he's campaigning on the no-nonsense 9-9-9 tax plan; back then, one of his no-nonsense ideas was to cut congressional salaries by 10 percent until the legislature sent a balanced budget to the president.

"I'm not a professional politician -- I'm a professional problem-solver. And I believe we should cut the salaries of senators and congressmen 10 percent until they balance the budget. I call that conservative common sense," Cain said in this campaign ad.

Cain still supports cutting congressional salaries. Independent journalists Chris Yandek and Jay Bildstein asked the former CEO about presidential, vice-presidential, and congressional pay cuts in an October interview:

JB: ... A leader would take the action on himself first. I believe you'd take the action on yourself as president.

[Herman Cain]: "Yes."

Jay Bildstein: Would you confront Congress and would you say to Congress, 'Now look, if we're gonna make a 10 percent cut across the board, we gotta do better on ourselves and we've gotta take a cut first.' Would you do that yes or no?

[Herman Cain]: "Yes I would. I would absolutely do that."

Salaries for most senators and representatives have been frozen at $174,000 since 2009. The speaker of the House makes the most of any lawmaker, $223,500, while the president pro tempore of the Senate and the majority and minority leaders of the House and senate each make $193,400.

Video credit: Akaczynski1/YouTube

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2011/11/video-of-the-day-cain-proposed-cutting-congressional-salaries/247720/