MILWAUKEE -- As thousands of furloughed workers try to figure out how to put meals on the table and gas in their car without a paycheck during the government shutdown, the cash keeps flowing to those blamed for the mess, because of the law that mandates members of Congress continue to get paid.
"The direct deposit will go out. They can't stop it," explained Sen. Ron Johnson.
But lawmakers don't have to keep it, and some are planning to give it back or give it away, though not all of them.
After asking all 10 of Wisconsin's members of Congress, those who responded said they are continuing to work, but only Rep. Gwen Moore said she will be collecting and keeping her salary.
She told CBS 58: “Federal government employees who rely on their paychecks to feed their families deserve a salary. That’s why I am coming to work every day and keeping both my district office in Milwaukee and my Washington, DC, office open and fully operational.”
Rep. Moore is named as one of only seven members of Congress who report no assets and a negative net worth out of more than 530 total in the House and Senate.
But according to the Social Security Administration, her salary of $174,000 is more than four times what the average American earned in 2011.
Like Moore, all representatives and senators make about $6700 every other week.
All of Rep. Moore's 15 staff members are currently working and making nothing, just like the rest of congressional staffers, who may eventually get back pay as staffers did during the last shutdown.
"I think the people working here, I'd have no problem offering them back pay. I think historically that's been the case" that furloughed workers also got back pay after a shutdown ended, added Sen. Johnson.
He said only seven of his nearly 40 staffers are on the job, and Sen. Tammy Baldwin said she is down to a "bare bones staff."
Johnson said he's going to write a check back to the treasury for the days the government is shut down.
"This is the taxpayers' money, and I should return it to the taxpayers," noted Sen. Johnson.
Representatives Paul Ryan and Tom Petri say they will donate their shutdown pay to charity, and Rep. Mark Pocan's office thinks he will too.
Lawmakers James Sensenbrenner, Ron Kind, Reid Ribble and Tammy Baldwin all say they will not "collect" their shutdown pay but didn't say if they'd end up taking it later when the government is running again.