As part of the various appropriations given to help House members do their jobs, U.S. Representatives receive a Members’ Representational Allowance, which is adjusted each year to match inflation.
A recent report from Legistorm found that 38% of offices didn’t touch a penny of the additional adjustment in 2022, calling into question just how much money members need to run their offices.
According to the House’s website, the MRA is an appropriation given to each House member for “support of the conduct of official and representational duties to the district from which elected.” It includes a staffing figure, an official expenses figure, and an official mail figure.
Most offices only used about 84% of their total funding before the increase. On average, Democrats spent about 4.4% more of their budgets than their Republican colleagues.
Money that’s not spent doesn’t go back to taxpayers. According to the House website, unexpended funds are available for two additional years before they are returned to the Treasury, allowing offices to stockpile cash.
Members of Congress are demonstrating that they can perform their jobs just fine with only 84% of their current budget. Its absurd to continue funding offices at these levels, because it’s clearly not necessary.
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