Ahead of Critical Funding Deadline, Spanberger Rejects Congressional Pay During Potential Government Shutdown

The Congresswoman Represents Thousands of Virginia’s Federal Employees & Active-Duty Servicemembers Who Would Work Without Pay

Spanberger: “I Ask That You Withhold My Pay Until the Entire Federal Government Has Been Funded & the Shutdown Has Ended”

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today asked the U.S. House of Representatives’ Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) to withhold her salary in the event of a government shutdown, which could begin as early as 12:00am ET on Sunday, October 1.

In a letter sent to Chief Administrative Officer Szpindor, Spanberger emphasized how government shutdowns harm the Virginians she represents — including thousands of federal workers, contractors, servicemembers, military families, small business owners, and more. Additionally, she reiterated her belief that Members of Congress should not get paid during these shutdowns.

In May 2023, Spanberger led the introduction of bipartisan legislation that would block Members of Congress from receiving their pay during a government shutdown. Earlier that same month, Spanberger called on the CAO to block Members of Congress from receiving their pay until the May 2023 debt ceiling crisis was resolved.

“I remain opposed to the current policy that allows Members of Congress to receive their federal salaries during a government shutdown — as are the American people,” said Spanberger. “As such, I will continue to lead the charge to pass bipartisan legislation that would block all Members of Congress from receiving their pay during these lapses in government funding. If Congress fails to fulfill its basic obligations, lawmakers shouldn’t be rewarded with our salaries until we do our jobs.”

Spanberger continued, “Just as I did prior to being sworn into the U.S. House during the 2018-2019 partial government shutdown, I ask that you withhold my pay until the entire federal government has been funded and the shutdown has ended.”

Spanberger has been raising the alarm about the devastating impacts of government shutdowns on Virginia’s economy and workforce. Earlier this month, she joined Prince William County business leaders and officials — including the Prince William Chamber of Commerce — to highlight how a government shutdown would have serious impacts on the County’s federal employees, small businesses, and overall economy.

Click here to read Spanberger’s letter, and the full letter text is below.

Dear Chief Administrative Officer Szpindor,

In the event of a government shutdown, I request that you withhold my congressional salary until the shutdown ends.

As a former federal employee and the representative for thousands of federal employees and their families in Virginia, I know that shutdowns damage the financial security of America’s public servants — Americans who work every day to keep our country safe, secure, and prosperous.

These are the same Americans who will be responsible for managing the federal government’s return to normal function following a wasteful shutdown.

I remain opposed to the current policy that allows Members of Congress to receive their federal salaries during a government shutdown — as are the American people. As such, I will continue to lead the charge to pass bipartisan legislation that would block all Members of Congress from receiving their pay during these lapses in government funding. If Congress fails to fulfill its basic obligations, lawmakers shouldn’t be rewarded with our salaries until we do our jobs.

Just as I did prior to being sworn into the U.S. House during the 2018-2019 partial government shutdown, I ask that you withhold my pay until the entire federal government has been funded and the shutdown has ended.

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