Rep. Duffy: I Only Make $174,000 — I’m Not Living “High On the Hog”

As a former Reality TV star, you would think that freshman Congressman Sean Duffy would be well acquainted with working for nothing.  But instead, the Wisconsin Republican complained during a recent local event that he wasn’t “living high on the hog” on a mere congressional salary, even if it was much more than the amount that the teachers he was advocating pay cut for were making.

Via Think Progress:

At a townhall meeting in Amery, Wisconsin last week, the “Real World’s” Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI) exposed just how out of touch with ordinary Americans he is. According to progressive blog Rightguardia, one constituent — an underemployed construction worker — explained that his wife, a teacher, may have to take a cut in wages if Wisconsin’s draconian budget bill goes through. “I’m just wondering what your wage is and if you guys would be willing to take a cut,” he asked Duffy.

Displaying that delicate sense of empathy characteristic of conservatives, Duffy whined about his $174,000 congressional salary and his “used minivan.” When the man pointed out his salary was “three times what I make,” Duffy reassured him that “I have more debt than you.” “I’m not living high off the hog,” he added:

Constituent: But a hundred and seventy-four thousand, that’s three times — that’s three of my family’s — three times what I make.

Duffy: Well our budget…I moved to cut by 5 percent. I did. You know what, I have no problem…let’s have a movement afoot. I walked into this job 6 weeks ago…um that I worked incredibly hard for. And I can guarantee you or most of you, I guarantee that I have more debt than all of you.

With 6 kids, I still pay off my student loans. I still pay my mortgage. I drive a used minivan. If you think I’m living high off the hog, I’ve got one paycheck. So I…I struggle to meet my bills right now. Would it be easier for me if I get more paychecks? Maybe, but at this point I’m not living high off the hog.

He has more debt, so he should be making more money?  If only that rationale worked in the real world.  And not the Real World.


By US House of Representatives [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


Nimue Pendragon

My family could live for 9 years on that amount of money. Wanker.

William Y.
William Y6 years ago

@Kili W. Why stop there, how about the rep getting no more than his/her lowest paid constituent.

Kili W.
Kili W6 years ago

How about we start a grassroots movement to limit Representatives' salaries to match those of teachers..... no Representative can be paid more than a teacher with the same level of education and tenure. So if a teacher with a Master's Degree, who's been on the job 20 years, can only make $80,000/year, that's what any Rep from their district with the same should be able to be paid -- and not a penny more.

Wayne G.
Wayne Gadberry7 years ago

You and the rest of you babies should remember that our Founding Fathers did not get a Salary. The word is CIVICS. Something they no longer teach in school. Your job was never designed to be perminent. You are there to serve the people who elected you, but greed is the bottom line. Don't worry, you will most likely retire as a Millionair plus. Lots of ways to make mone on the hill. I'm sure you will find them.

Paul Diamond
Paul Diamond7 years ago

$174K, he best medical care on the planet FREE, a government car whenever he wants one, the best retirement plan on the planet FREE, commissary priviliges at any military base w/ all the discounts that go w/ it and a plethora perks besides.

Grace Johnson
Grace Johnson7 years ago

if he can't make it earning $174,000 a year then he needs to realize how hard it is for some one making $40,000 a year what a whiner!

Lika S.
Lika P7 years ago

Pathetic of him, isn't it? he knew about his student loans and had 6 kids anyway. Thing is, he's probably mad at "liberals" and welfare queens complaining we don't live within our means. Yet look at him?

r J.
Robin J7 years ago

174K??? let him try living on 34,000 A YEAR then he has a right to complain-- AND NOT BEFORE

Kathlene Lentz
Kathlene Lentz7 years ago

He needs to take about $130,000 pay cut, then bitch about his income and his debts. He didn't even mention that he and his family get free medical care!

April Thompson
April Thompson7 years ago

I don't have pity for him! My husband , son and I live off of $25,000 a year before taxes are taken out (more like $22,000)! Try getting by on this Mr. Duffy!