In the debate about the upcoming fiscal cliff, politicians have talked about how many people would not get paid and many services would automatically be cut back.
However, if we pass the fiscal cliff, would the politicians themselves be unpaid during this time until the problem is resolved? Surprisingly, it turns out that if the fiscal cliff is passed, Congressmen, Senators and the Executive branch, which means the President and Vice President, etc. would all continue to be paid. This can certainly be seen as the legislative branches having less incentive to solve the problem immediately.
This can certainly be considered quite unfair. The politicians create an unnatural situation in which the government cannot pay obligations of the utmost urgency such as debt and treasury bill obligations to bondholder, transportation, potentially even parts of the military and social security and medicare, but they continue to be paid. There has been backlash about this in the past. There are provisions in the law which states that the politicians continue to get paid even if the government has monetary issues in other areas.
This may be somewhat understandable and tolerable to the public if it is an unavoidable situation, but the same public finds it completely unacceptable if the problem is created by
the politicians themselves.