WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on the Legislative Branch, along with U.S. Senators Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) announced that they have secured increased funds for Senate offices to pay their interns, within legislation passed by the Senate Appropriations Committee. The senators have championed this effort since 2017, leading to the passage of Congress’ first-ever dedicated funding to support paid internships. The increase in funds – up $1 million from FY 2019 to total $6 million – passed in the Senate Appropriations markup of the FY 2020 Legislative Branch funding bill.
“It’s not right that some kids miss out on the opportunity to intern in Washington because they don’t have wealthy parents. That’s why we must continue to level the playing field and make sure income isn’t a barrier to what is often a life changing experience. This funding that passed today helps us do just that,” said Murphy.
“Congressional interns are valued members of our team who help our offices serve our constituents in countless ways. Qualified candidates for these internships should not have to turn down this experience due to financial concerns. Last year, I was proud to help lead the effort to pay Congressional interns, and I’m glad that we were able to build on this success with an increase in funds this year,” said Van Hollen.
“Internships are part of the pipeline for Senate staff, and most people can’t afford to work for free,” said Schatz. “This new increased funding means we can help more young people from all walks of life get their foot in the door, and make sure that Senate staffers look more like the rest of the country.”