The U.S. has been suffering from an economic lull for years now, and workers have been feeling the pinch.
This year, congress delayed budget measures until the recent sequester resulted. That means that now even government employees will begin to be affected by the economic situation. If the government cuts laid out by the sequester are not covered in the near future, some government employees may be forced to take furloughs, less politely known as extended unpaid leave.
According to an Associated Press report, The White House this week has announced that President Obama will be making a gesture to show his solidarity with government employees who are facing the prospect of furloughs. The president will be returning 5% of his yearly salary to the U.S. Treasury.
Since 2001, U.S. Presidents have been paid an annual salary of $400,000. President Obama's symbolic contribution to the treasury amounts to $20,000.
Other U.S. politicians are also announcing that they will be giving up money in response to the sequester. According to the AP report, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel will return 14 days' worth of salary to the U.S. Treasury, which is symbolic of the two-week cut in pay Defense Department employees could end up taking. Alaska Senator Mark Begich has also announced he will return part of his salary to the treasury.