Time for Sean Duffy to Meet the Real World

From the wausau daily herald:

Democrats are getting some amusing mileage out of Rep. Sean Duffy’s recent exchange with a Polk County constituent about his congressional pay.

In a videotape of a town hall meeting in Amery, Duffy, R-Ashland, is seen telling a construction worker who lost his job and now drives a bus that even he was having difficulty making ends meet. As a member of Congress, the Republican freshman is paid $174,000 a year.

“I struggle to meet my bills right now,” Duffy told the constituent after noting that he has six children and a mortgage, drives a used minivan and is still paying off his student loan. “At this point, I’m not living high off the hog.”

Duffy also pointed out that he resigned from his prosecutor’s job to run for Congress and spent six months without a salary.

Exsqueeze me?  If you can’t afford 6 kids, keep your weewee in your pants, and don’t buy a house if you can’t afford the mortgage payments (isn’t that one of the Rethuglican themes?).  In addition, don’t quit your day job if you can’t afford it, even if it’s to run for Congress.   How ironic that Seanie got his start on The Real World back in 1997, and he still has no clue about it.
duffyOriginal DVD cover

So on Wednesday, Wisconsin Democrats released a mock ad by Polk County Republicans for a food and clothing drive for “poor Sean Duffy” to be held on April 1, April Fool’s Day. Among the suggested contributions were: disposable iPads, French-cuffed shirts, riding crops and used cashmere.

“We’re trying to make a point with this satire, but at the end of the day, it’s no laughing matter that Sean Duffy is advocating an agenda on behalf of his oil tycoon Koch Brothers patrons at the same time he is so screamingly out-of-touch with the north woods working families he is supposed to represent,” Wisconsin Democratic Party Chairman Mike Tate said, referring to conservative billionaire financiers Charles and David Koch.

On Tuesday, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee accused Duffy of complaining and pointed out he earned more than $90,000 in 2009 as a county prosecutor, more than twice the average earnings of Wisconsin families.


“He was simply pointing out that he’s no stranger to tough times,” [Duffy spokesman Daniel] Son said.


Both Duffy, who was elected to replace retiring Democrat Dave Obey, and Rep. Reid Ribble, R-Lawrence, are on the DCCC’s target list for 2012. Both represent congressional districts President Barack Obama won in 2008.


At the Amery town hall meeting, the former construction worker told Duffy that he now makes less money as a bus driver and that his wife, a teacher, anticipates a pay cut.

He asked Duffy how much members of Congress make and whether he would be willing to take less money.

Duffy, wearing an open-collar shirt with the sleeves rolled up, told the audience lawmakers are paid $174,000 a year, but the federal benefits are not as good as the benefits he had as a state employee. He said he supported a 5 percent cut in the congressional budget.

The salary figure caused the constituent’s jaw to drop.

“A hundred and seventy-four thousand,” the builder said, “that’s three times — that’s three of my family’s — three times what I make.”


At a townhall meeting in Amery, Wisconsin last week, the “Real World’s” Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI) exposed just how out of touch with ordinary Americans he is. According to progressive blog Rightguardia, one constituent — an underemployed construction worker — explained that his wife, a teacher, may have to take a cut in wages if Wisconsin’s draconian budget bill goes through. “I’m just wondering what your wage is and if you guys would be willing to take a cut,” he asked Duffy. Displaying that delicate sense of empathy characteristic of conservatives, Duffy whined about his $174,000 congressional salary and his “used minivan.”


Duffy is certainly no Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), a multimillionaire car alarm mogul. Like many Wisconsinites, he has several kids and, according to his financial disclosure statement, student loans and a mortgage to pay off. But Duffy’s salary is indeed about three times Wisconsin’s (and the national) median income. What’s more, Wisconsin’s unemployment rate is 7.4 percent statewide, and 8.2 percent in Wausau, a city Duffy represents.

But if Duffy wants to “start getting real” and relieve some of that financial burden, he could sell that second home in Iron River, WI he owns.


Filed under April Fool's Day, Barack Obama, Congress, Darrell Issa, David Obey, Democrats, humor, movies, parody, politics, Republicans, satire, snark, Wordpress Political Blogs

22 responses to “Time for Sean Duffy to Meet the Real World

  1. If you’re having trouble making ends meet on $174k, then you’re living wrong.

    It’s that simple.

    Some people keep working while running for Congress. If he didn’t, then that means he knew he could afford not to. I’m sure that he sold off some of his investments. For the record, having to cash in your stocks because you took six months off from work to campaign for Congress is not quite the same thing as hoping that the oil holds out another week so that you can afford to get milk this week.

    This is the kind of comment that leads to French Revolutions. Not that I’m encouraging it, bien sûr … ; – )

  2. jean-philippe

    It’s painful to know we are ruled by people who can’t manage money…

    • seriously! i live on less than $920 a month, and i managed to pay off my condo and my car. i have no credit card debt. i don’t live like a queen, but i don’t have to worry about living on the streets (at least not yet).

  3. The bus driver was probably floored thinking how much easier his life would be for him and his teacher wife with $174K salary. And the Republicans claim teachers are the bad guys. Duffy’s lucky he wasn’t bitch slapped.

  4. Awwwwwwwwwwwwww the poor guy is struggling to make ends meet on more than 3x the average US annual wage. ($46,800).

    The absolute shame & horror of having to drive a used minivan.

    All together now:


    • according to the documents he filled out, he and his wife made $154,500 the year before. that’s just their salaries. so, when he became a congresscritter, he got an almost $20,000 raise. if he can’t make do with a 20K raise, then he has no business deciding on the nation’s budget.

      • I got a .13 cents an hour annual raise, which is $270.40 more for the year.
        I’ll gladly trade for his $20K raise!

        No sympathy from me!

        • i’m on disability. we didn’t get even a penny more last year and probably won’t this year either. when we do, it’s usually around 13 bucks a month. woo-wooo!! where’s the ferrari dealership?

  5. Ah, the Real World star! I was wondering where I’d read his name before.

    It’s times like this that I’m glad I’m no longer either a Republican or a reality TV fan. This guy makes them both look bad.

  6. This guy could take the example of the 1946 freshman congressman who told the goper who put forth his candidacy that he would lose the lawyer money he was acustomend to. So the chairman sent out bagmen to make sure the young Dick Nixon was compensated. By his second term he had Mickey Cohen shaking down every petty gangster in LA for the slush fund. This went on to such great heights as taking a million cash from Greek generals to get Agnew on the ticket. “I am not a crook” the Big Dick lamented but he’d sure take it under the table from anybody. Just ask his old friend Rebozo (Spanish: to bozo again), a self made man who made his foutune doing laundry for a Mr. Lansky.

    • 😆 love your definition of rebozo, jerry! 😆 that was a very familiar name down here. anytime anyone mentioned key biscayne, it was followed by a reference to ol’ bebe living there.

  7. Damn…. $174 K…. just to walk around and say Stupid Shit? boy&howdy…. as soon as my ankle feels better I’m going to run for Congress! I just have to figger out how far away it is…. see… cause right now I just run down to the bar once in awhile and I wonder what kind of shape I HAVE TO BE IN….. other than stupid.

    • hello okjimm,

      welcome to the raisin! 😀

      so happy to see you over here. i know your name very well from other sites, and i always enjoy your comments. i hope you don’t mind that i fixed your link. it wasn’t working, so i googled and got the correct url. you might want to check it so that people can link to your wonderful blog. i just visited, and it is visually pleasing and has such a nice mix of content. i really like it, and i hope the raisinettes will visit.

      i think we should form a raisinette party and all run for office. we’ll take over congress and kick the asses of those teabaggin’ asswipes.

  8. //fixed your link. it wasn’t working// hmmmm… and here all this time I thought I was just missing a link… or was the missing link….and I did get fixed, oh so long ago, ZPG and all that…. Thanks for stopping by… do so anyz time