Essay by PaperNerd ContributorUniversity, Bachelor's January 2002

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Congress Essay There are many factors that contribute to the reason why Congress is regarded as a status quo institution. Liberal allowances for staff salaries and needs as well as seniority are just three that give Congress this name.

For Senators, salaries range from $592,608 to 1,190,724 depending on their state's population. House members receive a flat yearly allowance of $336,384 for salaries. Currently, United States Senators receive $145,100 per year. Since the early 1980s, majority leaders and minority leaders as well as the president pro tempore, have received higher salaries than other members of the Senate. Currently, they earn $181,400 per year with benefits. The most compelling factor involved with this statistic is the fact that the Senators themselves have control over how much money they award themselves. Title 2, Section 36 of the United States Code give Senators this right. This, along with the many benefits (mentioned below) that attribute to the job have created a reason to gravitate toward working for Congress as a lifetime career.

With senior members of Congress making more money, Senators are awarded for pushing their way to the top.

Not only are Congressmen awarded financially, they are showered with endless amounts of benefits as well. Rent-free offices at home and in Washington with liberal allowances for furniture and office equipment, unlimited long-distance telephone services, frequent time off for campaigning and vacationing, a government-subsidized health insurance-plan, opportunities for overseas travel on "official business"� are just a few of the many perks that are included with the job. House member's expense accounts, including a $43,000 basic allowance, average more than $80,000 a year. Senators receive $37,000 to $143,000 yearly, depending on the number of constituents. These allowances are included in addition to their already-escalated yearly salaries. There is even a barber who works...