U.S. Rep. Ted Yoho filed a bill that would keep convicted congressmen from collecting the taxpayer-funded portion of their pension.
If passed, the Trust Returned to the United States Taxpayer (TRUST) Act would prohibit any member of Congress convicted of a felony while in office from profiting from their congressional service.
Yoho, who represents Florida’s 3rd District – which includes Alachua County – said today that on the campaign trail he heard many people say they felt like Congress holds itself to a different set of laws than average Americans.
“We have to restore trust back into the American people about their government,” he said. “I thought this was a critical piece of legislation.”
Yoho said that if military personnel can forfeit their benefits if they receive a dishonorable discharge, it should apply to members of Congress as well.
If the bill is passed, he said, it will not affect the portion of pensions funded by the lawmakers themselves or be applied to legislators who have left office. The bill would also expand the list of crimes which members of Congress could forfeit their retirement benefits from, he said.
Yoho said he is confident the bill will pass and that he received positive feedback from both Democrats and Republicans.
Rebekah Geier edited this story online.