Who Congress Pays

After reviewing over 8,500 pages of payroll records from the House and Senate, we’re releasing the first-ever audit of the Congressional Internship Fund, “Who Congress Pays: Analysis of Lawmakers’ Use of Intern Allowances in the 116th Congress.” Our report examines which offices used the funds, who they hired, and how much interns were paid.

We found most offices used their funds, but not equitably. Over 76% of paid interns were White, and went to private universities.

Before 2017, only 10 percent of congressional interns were paid. Since then, we’ve convinced Congress to allocate $48 million for lawmakers to pay their interns.

Equity in the administration of paid internships means more transparent hiring, promotion of remote internships, expanded funding for stipends, increased engagement with and recruitment from communities of color, and prioritization of need-based applicants.