CNN - If the government shuts down, many federal workers will be out of work and unpaid. That doesn't apply to members of Congress, however.
So, why do senators and representatives get to collect their paycheck while hundreds of thousands of federal workers will have to go without? Blame the constitution.
Ordinary members of Congress in both chambers make $174,000 a year. Congressional leaders make more. No Congress can change its own salaries - it can only vote to change the pay of future sessions of Congress.
Senator Boxer says she'll probably give her paycheck to charity, but that's no consolation to government workers like Dee Alexander.
"If we're not getting paid, I don't think Congress should get paid either, because I think they need to feel what we're feeling," she said.