Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Santa Clarita, announced Friday he has introduced the Raising Annual Income of Servicemembers by Enhancing (RAISE) Minimum Base Pay Act, which would provide junior enlisted service members a pay raise to a minimum of the equivalent of $15 an hour ($31,200 per year).
“Some 23,000 service members, many of whom also provide for their families, rely on food stamps just to make ends meet. That is 23,000 soldiers too many,” Garcia said in a prepared statement issued after he introduced the bill. “If the government is paying for our service members to live on food stamps, we may as well pay them on the front end through base pay.”
“To build the military of the future that will deter aggression from China and other adversaries, we must be able to recruit and retain qualified Americans to serve in our military. The simple reality is that we can’t do that if your local fast food chain is paying more than the armed services,” said Garcia. “For too long, our junior enlisted service members have been neglected by Congress and our government. That ends now. Our service members are our nation’s secret weapon and it’s time we treat them as such.”
Garcia recently delivered a speech on the House floor making the case for this proposal. That speech can be viewed at www.youtube.com/watch?v=wEeNlPD61XI.
Pentagon leak statement
Also on Friday, Garcia issued the following statement after the Department of Justice confirmed that the FBI arrested the alleged leaker of classified information from the Pentagon:
“I commend our law enforcement for apprehending this alleged criminal. If it is proven that this individual acted with malicious intent, he should be tried for treason immediately. This leak of classified information is a direct threat to our national security and puts the safety of our heroic military personnel at risk.”