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By Steven Dennis Posted at 9:35 p.m. on Sept. 25, 2013
The Senate Democrats’ stopgap spending bill amendment would strip out the House’s Obamacare defunding language but preserve the $174,000 payment to the widow of the late Sen. Frank R. Lautenberg.
The payment of a year’s salary to lawmaker’s spouses in the next appropriations bill after they die has long been a custom of Congress, but the House’s inclusion of a $174,000 payment to Bonnie Englebardt Lautenberg drew a strong reaction in light of Lautenberg’s vast wealth at a time when lawmakers are cutting funding for food stamps and other programs.
Lautenberg had been No. 8 on Roll Call’s 50 Richest Members of Congress with a net worth of at least $56.8 million before his death.
The full text of the CR amendment was posted by the Senate Appropriations Committee here.
Niels Lesniewski has covered the Senate for CQ Roll Call since January 2010, and more recently as a staff writer and resident procedure guru for Roll Call. Niels holds degrees in both government and theater but sometimes can't tell the difference between the two. @nielslesniewski