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Republicans on the House Appropriations Committee want to slash more than 6 percent from legislative office budgets next year, a move some Democrats say would force them to lay off staff members.
Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) says this year's budget tightening has already caused him to cut salaries for his committee staff by 5 percent. He says the proposal amounts to Republican posturing on the deficit without taking into account the needs of many young Hill staffers.
"They are in that same fragile economy, with a lot less money and they can less afford it," he says. "So I think it's a contradiction and I resent it."
Republicans argue the nation’s expanding debt necessitates further budget cuts for legislative affairs.