Sixth District DFL congressional candidate Tarryl Clark released a TV ad Wednesday calling on Republican incumbent Michele Bachmann to cut her salary 5 percent until Congress balances the federal budget.
At a state Capitol news conference, Clark told reporters she thinks Bachmann should also reduce her office expenses. Clark said as a state senator she began cutting her per diem expenses in the fall of 2008 when the economy collapsed. Clark said that saved taxpayers more than $13,000.
"Congressman Bachmann should do what I did," she said. "She should cut her compensation and she should cut her office expenses because we are in a crisis."
Bachmann's campaign did not return telephone calls about Clark's challenge, Bachmann's campaign did issue a statement.
"Today Tarryl Clark launched perhaps her most hypocritical attack yet. While she pulls an election season stunt about cutting legislator pay, when she had a real opportunity to cut pay in the legislature she voted no," political adviser Andy Parrish said. "In fact ... she also led the effort in the state senate to raise legislative reimbursement rates and give the power to set elected official salaries to an unelected board."
Clark said the call for 5 percent pay cuts applies not only to Bachmann but to every member of Congress.
Bachmann is criticizing Clark for casting a decisive vote for higher state income taxes earlier this year. The ad ties Clark to the economic policies of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and President Barack Obama.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)