In a move sure to silence his opponents, President Obama plans to return 5 percent of his salary to the Treasury in solidarity with furloughed federal workers facing automatic budget cuts known as the sequester.
Retroactive as of March 1st, administration officials said the 5% figure approximates the level of spending cuts to nondefense federal agencies that took effect that day.
“The president has decided that, to share in the sacrifice being made by public servants across the federal government that are affected by the sequester, he will contribute a portion of his salary back to the Treasury,’’ the official said.
Politics USA reports that a check of John Boehner, Eric Cantor, Paul Ryan, and Rand Paul’s websites reveals not a single statement or mention of the president’s decision to return 5% of his pay. Apparently, these Republicans believe that their talk of budgetary belt tightening applies to you, not them.
The White House has also scaled back purchases, curtailed travel, and reduced the use of Internet air cards.
The Boston Globe reported that while the pay giveback is a matter of symbolism for a president living in the White House and traveling via Air Force One, symbolism has become a political headache for Obama in times of austerity. Critics have focused on his vacations and golf outings to suggest he remains insulated.