Letter to the Editor: It Seems Obvious Who to Vote Out in 2024


Marie Gluesenkamp Perez voted no on HR 2811, a bill Republicans recently passed. Titled the Limit, Save, Grow Act, this measure is a common sense approach to raising the debt limit while reducing spending. 

It would increase the federal debt limit and decrease spending, would repeal several energy tax credits, modify the permitting process and other requirements for energy projects, expand work requirements for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and nullify regulations for the cancellation of federal student loan debt.

Marie also voted no on HR 23, Family and Small Business Taxpayer Protection Act. In short, this bill rescinds certain balances made available to the Internal Revenue Service for expanding their enforcement power and reach.

I was looking back at the summer of 2020, when Gov. Jay Inslee was closing businesses and how my life here in Olympia was severely impacted in the months and years that followed. Surviving that trial of lockdowns and mandates, I realized just how sensitive the private sector economy is to heavy handed government policies combined with excessive government spending. My business suffered as well as those of my friends and family. 

The public sector, however, seems to flourish during times of economic uncertainty.

Since the COVID pandemic has ended, federal spending also seems out of control, while the dissent of productive citizens in Main Street USA is completely ignored. One could easily cite the Biden administration’s proxy war in the Ukraine against Russia as how government spending has no grounding in logic nor popular support.

Auditors at openthebooks.com in a recent article titled “Seeking Daylight On The Administrative State,” were able to calculate from Freedom of Information Act filings that Washington, D.C. bureaucrats are paid approximately $576 million per day. Openthebooks says, “That’s more than $210 billion per year for the 1.44 million employees of 125 rank-and-file general administrative, civil enforcement and federal law enforcement agencies ...” They went on to state that from 109 of the 125 federal agencies in Washington, the average employee salary is more than $100,000.

Here are some additional facts:

Average real median wage for the average employee was $54,339 in 2021. Average salary at the Census Bureau is $67,656 (where these numbers are first gathered). After working just three years for the federal government, employees have 44 days of paid time off.

Federal employees worked from home for years due to the recently concluded COVID “emergency.” Congress incentivized work from home with a $570 million “paid-to-stay home” fund at the Treasury. If you were a federal employee, you could collect $21,000 over 15 weeks in paid family leave if your child wasn’t back to school.

Openthebooks.com estimates some $36 billion worth of taxpayer-funded salary, benefits and bonuses are hidden from Americans. They also discovered that payments go to mystery people in mystery locations. They write, “That means no scrutiny of performance versus pay. It means no oversight by Congress. It means no chance to cut bloat during the budget process.”

It seems obvious who to vote out in 2024.

Matt Garland,