Aaron Schock still gets taxpayer-funded pension

Carrie Levine

Rep. Aaron Schock, who announced his resignation today under suspicion of misusing public money, will be eligible for more of it in retirement.

Schock, a Republican from Illinois, could eventually collect hundreds of thousands of dollars in taxpayer-funded retirement benefits, depending on how long he lives.

Starting at age 62, he will be eligible for just under $18,500 annually, according to estimates by the National Taxpayers Union, a conservative nonprofit organization.

Douglas Kellogg, a spokesman for the National Taxpayers Union, added that members of Congress are also eligible for a 401(k)-style plan, but it’s unknown whether Schock has chosen to participate in it.

According to a June report from the Congressional Research Service, members of Congress who have completed at least five years of service are eligible for taxpayer-funded pensions beginning at age 62.

The amount of a former congressional member’s pension varies, but the payout is based on the number of years of service and an average of the member’s three highest years of salary.

Being a former member of Congress carries other perks, too, including access to the House floor.

Schock, known as perhaps the nation’s fittest congressman and who once posed shirtless for Men’s Health, will also still be allowed to use the House gym — he’ll just have to pay a fee.

In recent weeks, Schock has been hit with repeated questions about his spending.

He repaid the government $40,000, money he spent redecorating his office along a theme inspired by “Downton Abbey,” a PBS historical drama, and fielded inquiries about his charter plane use, luxury overseas travel, personal photographer and concert tickets.

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This story is part of Primary Source. Primary Source keeps you up-to-date on developments in the post-Citizens United world of money in politics. Click here to read more stories in this blog.

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Copyright 2014 The Center for Public Integrity. This story was published by The Center for Public Integrity, a nonprofit, nonpartisan investigative news organization in Washington, D.C.