A few facts to consider as you weigh the potential impact of the federal government pay freeze President Obama proposed on Monday:
- In the first half of 2010, 5% of U.S. workers reported working for the federal government. Since the pay freeze would only affect civilian employees, the pay freeze would affect a slightly smaller percentage of the overall working population.
- Federal workers live and work in every state. More than one in four workers in Washington, D.C., report working for the federal government, along with double-digit percentages in Maryland, Virginia, Alaska, and Hawaii. Midwest states tend to have the fewest government workers, but with at least 2% in every state, the impact of the pay freeze would be far-reaching.
- Incoming House Speaker John Boehner says he's hoping for a federal hiring freeze, too. Currently, the federal government is creating the most jobs in the economy, with 42% of federal workers reporting that their employer is hiring. That compares to 29% of all U.S. workers.
President Obama says a two-year freeze on civilian federal pay will save "$2 billion over the rest of this fiscal year and $28 billion in cumulative savings over the next five years." The larger goal is to chip away at the federal deficit, which Americans want too.
Tuesday on Gallup.com, we'll report on how Americans currently rate Obama on his efforts to reduce the federal deficit, as well as where Americans rank reducing the deficit in terms of strategies the government can pursue to help the economy.
To read more about how Americans view the federal government in general, check out the results of our special series on the issue.
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