Now this is interesting. Rep. Sean Duffy (a Real World alum, and married to another Real World alum) was asked by a constituent if he would support cutting the $174,000 (not including benefits) salary for members of Congress. Apparently, he said that he would, but his hands are tied (that's fair, in that he cannot pass something like that on his own). Duffy then goes on to explain the difficulties in stretching $174,000, since he is a father of six (with a stay-at-home wife, and a pretty good tax deduction per kid), still paying on his mortgage (there is talk that he is actually paying mortgages on two homes in Wisconsin), and still paying his student loans (there is a tax deduction there too for all of the interest paid, up to $2,500). Mind you, as has been noted in other reports, the constituent who asked the question let Duffy know that he makes three times less than the Congressman. In essence, it sounds like dude wasn't buying it.
Now, as a veteran of group house living in the District, I know that Duffy can find a good deal on a group house in the city, so that should help cut costs. If things are really getting rough, then perhaps the other Real World alum he is married to could go out and find some work. I am sure that she could cash in on her past fame and bring in some extra cash. Many families have two parents working outside of the home in order to make ends meet. These are, after all, tough times. Ultimately, I think that anyone trying to suggest that $174,000 a year leaves you struggling should be laughed out of the room. Your average American family would see a salary like that, again not including the benefits, as a fucking lottery win. Maybe Duffy should re-make that classic from the movie Hustle and Flow, "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp," and just change "Pimp" to "Member of Congress."