Congress shall have no retirement, health, or other pension benefit law for itself or federal employees, except the military, unless the law applies to everyone.
Congress shall have no power to pass any Bill conferring a retirement, health, pension, or other benefit upon itself or its past, present, or future members or any employee of the United States or agency thereof except the military unless such Bill applies generally to all other citizens.
We begin this amendment with the comment that the most important duty our federal government has under the Constitution is to provide for the general defense of this nation. Although the defense of the nation can take many forms including diplomacy, the use of the military is the most important. Those who risk and lose their lives in the defense of our nation are entitled to be treated separately and provided with such benefits as Congress deems appropriate.
While the military is a special case, we see no reason that members of Congress or federal employees should have a special safety net because they work for the federal government. In most cases, their safety nets cost more than those available to workers in the private sector. The effect is to pass on costs to later generations to cover these safety nets for retired federal workers.
Proper pay-as-you-go business requires Congress to pay federal workers a fair wage with sufficient funds to defray any health or pension benefit they may wish to have and to make them subject to the same laws crafted by Congress to benefit all Americans.
As a matter of fairness we have provided in Amendment 29.2 a method for dealing equitably with members of Congress and federal employees who have relied on existing law for their retirement. This method gives Congress two years from the adoption of this Amendment to calculate the present value of the future benefits of these persons and to thereafter pay such persons in cash or over time as Congress shall determine.