One of the most recently adopted amendments, but one of the first proposed, the Twenty-Seventh Amendment limits when changes can be made to Congressional salaries. Under this amendment, any increases or decreases in salary for members of Congress cannot occur until after the next election of representatives has occurred. Essentially, Congressmembers can't raise their own salaries right before getting voted out of office. Any law passed that changes their pay cannot take effect until the following congressional session.
"No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened."
United States Library of Congress, The Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation
Referred to the state legislatures at the same time as those proposals that eventually became the Bill of Rights, the congressional pay amendment had long been assumed to be dead.1 This provision had its genesis, as did several others of the first amendments, in the petitions of the states ratifying the Constitution.2 It was ratified, however, by only six states (of the eleven needed), and it was rejected by five states. Aside from the idiosyncratic action of the Ohio legislature in 1873, which ratified the proposal in protest of a controversial pay increase adopted by Congress, the pay limitation provision lay dormant until the 1980s. Then, an aide to a Texas legislator discovered the proposal and began a crusade that culminated some ten years later in its ratification.
The House of Representatives
Delegation of Legislative Power