Just The News- Critics of taxpayer-funded retirement plans for members of Congress wonder why their representatives are allowed to double-dip into taxpayer-funded plans, especially when the median net worth of a U.S. member exceeds $1.1 million.
The Golden Horseshoe is a weekly designation from Just the News intended to highlight egregious examples of wasteful taxpayer spending by the government. The ward is named for the horseshoe-shaped toilet seats for military airplanes that cost the Pentagon a whopping $640 each back in the 1980s.
This Independence Day weekend, our award is going to the United States Congress for billing taxpayers millions of dollars, in perpetuity, for multiple cushy pension and savings plans for their members.
Members of Congress are eligible for 401(k)-equivalent plans, in addition to generous pension plans. Members of Congress (and other federal employees and members of the uniformed services) are eligible for the Thrift Savings Plan, which is essentially the same as an employer-backed 401(k) retirement fund, except that in this case, the “employer contribution” is actually funded by U.S. taxpayers. The Thrift Savings Plan offers a 5% match rate and competitively low administrative fees, making it widely viewed as one of the best deals around. As of 2019, more than 5.5 million Americans were Thrift Savings Plan participants.
Critics of taxpayer-funded retirement plans for members of Congress wonder why their representatives are allowed to double-dip into taxpayer funded plans, especially when the median net worth of a U.S. member exceeds $1.1 million.
Nancy Pelosi, for instance, is speaker of the House of Representatives. Accordingly, she earns the highest salary in Congress at $223,500 annually. Her net worth is also estimated at between $50 million and $72 million. Taxpayers have contributed $282,965 to Pelosi’s Thrift Savings Plan over her 34-year congressional career, and when she retires her pension will be worth $106,363 annually, in addition to the $47,604 yearly in social security payments she will be eligible to receive, according to calculations by Open the Books. read more