POLITICS

'Fiscal cliff' deal to block pay hike for Congress

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Photo - Vice President Joe Biden, center, with Majority Leader Harry Reid, left, of Nevada, arrive for a Senate Democratic caucus meeting about the fiscal cliff, on Capitol Hill Monday, Dec. 31, 2012 in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Vice President Joe Biden, center, with Majority Leader Harry Reid, left, of Nevada, arrive for a Senate Democratic caucus meeting about the fiscal cliff, on Capitol Hill Monday, Dec. 31, 2012 in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Politics,Congress,Associated Press,Fiscal Cliff

WASHINGTON (AP) — Legislation to prevent the government from going over the so-called fiscal cliff will also block a $900 automatic pay hike for members of Congress.

It's one more reason for lawmakers to vote for the measure extending Bush-era tax cuts on individual income up to $450,000 while increasing rates for earnings above that threshold.

Under a 1989 law, lawmakers are supposed to receive automatic cost-of-living pay hikes, but as Congress' approval ratings have fallen, lawmakers have routinely voted to reject the raise.

Lawmakers make $174,000 a year. They had already voted in September to block the pay raise through March 27, but President Barack Obama recently issued an executive order to implement it, along with a pay increase for federal workers.

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