House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) raised the salaries of House staff members in a parting act before leaving her role.
The maximum annual rate for staff members in the House will now be $212,100, more than the pay some elected members of the House receive.
Pelosi Gives House Staffers Raise Before Handing Off Speaker’s Gavel to GOP https://t.co/GtjdYNAQe3
— Conservative Brief (@ConservBrief) January 2, 2023
“It is my privilege as Speaker to announce that the House will raise the maximum annual rate of pay for staff to $212,100. This increase in the Speaker’s Pay Order is consistent with the recent raise in the Executive Branch Level II and Senior Executive Branch maximum annual salary rate," Pelosi wrote in a letter to House members.
“As Speaker, it has been a key priority for me to bring the brightest minds and a diversity of backgrounds here to Capitol Hill — at every level of public service,” she added.
NEW: Pelosi boosts max staff pay to $212k/year.
That's a lot more than members make, and part of a longstanding push to help retain Hill staff. pic.twitter.com/t0sB7APu2n
— Chris Cioffi (@ReporterCioffi) December 30, 2022
"In 2021, Pelosi raised the maximum salary for House staff to $199,300. The salary cap was raised again in May to $203,700, at which point the speaker also instituted a minimum salary of $45,000 for staffers," the New York Post wrote.
"Rank-and-file members of Congress make $174,000 a year. Members of congressional leadership make slightly more, with Pelosi earning $223,500 per year as speaker of the House," the report added.
— New York Post (@nypost) December 31, 2022
Former Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, who once ran for president as a Democrat and has since left the party, condemned the action.
"What we're seeing here is the same thing that I saw when I was in Congress — is this blatant corruption being exposed in broad daylight — the system is rigged," Gabbard said on "Jesse Watters Primetime."
"We have people in positions of power to pass legislation, to enact new policies. They can see, 'OK, here are the industries or companies that will benefit from this. I'm going to go and make these investments, buy this stock or that stock, or have my husband or wife do it and then make money in the process,'" she added.
There's a reason Pelosi took the action just before leaving office, as the increase in salary is a highly unpopular move as many Americans struggle with daily expenses.
Instead of focusing on help for Americans in need, Pelosi's act shows an emphasis on helping those in Washington make even more.