House Dem latest to donate pay in face of sequester

Murphy said he would donate 5 percent of his paycheck each month to a different charity. His first contribution of $8,700 will go to the family of Sgt. Gary Morales, a sheriff who was killed in February.

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Murphy joins a growing movement among members of Congress to give up part of their salary since the $85 billion sequester will not cut their pay. In the House, Reps. Ami Bera (D-Calif.) and Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) and Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) have said they would donate their pay to charity to share in the pain of the cuts.

Sens. Mark Begich (D-Alaska) and Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) have said they would cut their pay as well, and President Obama and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel are making similar moves.

Congressional salaries are not explicitly exempted from the sequester cuts, although they end up being spared because the sequester is governed by a 1985 law that exempts them for technical reasons. For example, that law says federal "accounts" must be cut in a sequester, but member salaries are not technically an "account" as defined by the law.

Norton suggested this week that the old law should be updated to include member pay in future sequesters.