Kare 11: Clark challenges Bachmann to cut her own pay

SAINT PAUL, Minn. — Democrat Tarryl Clark is challenging incumbent Michele Bachmann to cut her own pay and stop mailing glossy flyers to constituents at taxpayer expense. She plans to launch a TV ad Thursday to punctuate the point.

“As our country has faced this budget challenge, what has Congressman Bachmann done? She’s expanded her office, her staff, and her expenses at taxpayer expense,” Sen. Clark told reporters at the State Capitol Wednesday.

“Congressman Bachmann should do what I did. She should cut her compensation, and she should cut her office expenses because we are in a crisis.”

Clark cut her state senate per diem expenses by $13,000 in 2009 and 2010, and slicked her office budget by more than five percent. The per diem is optional expense account money state lawmakers can receive in addition to their $31,500 annual salary.

The new ad also takes aim at Bachmann for spending $105,000 in congressional mailings, using her franking privilege for glossy multi-colored flyers that Clark contends resemble campaign literature more than constituent mailings.

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