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The majority of blame for the U.S. Government shutdown is being put on the shoulders of Congress. However, members of the House of Representatives and the Senate will still be paid.

Their pay is protected by the 27th Amendment to the Constitution.

No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened, reads the amendment, which was passed in 1992.

USA Today reports that the point of the law was to prevent members of Congress from voting a pay raise for themselves. But, it also protects them from taking a pay cut.

The current salary of members of Congress is $174,000 per year, although some members in leadership positions get paid more.

If you take the base pay and multiply it by 535 (the number of Congressional members) then divide the total by 365 (days in a year), the total payout to Congress during each day of the shutdown will be $255,041. It's about $400 more per day if you add leadership pay.

Some members of Congress have volunteered to forego their pay during the shutdown, including members of Washington state's delegation.

Although Congress members will still get a paycheck, many Congressional staffers will not. The Washington Post reports that it's up to members of Congress to determine which staffers are vital for day-to-day operations and which ones will be sent home. Those who stay will be paid, but retroactively.

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