WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) – Lawmakers are pushing for higher pay for federal and dc government employees.

“The government workers must have 8.7%,” Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) said.

Tuesday, Booker joined other lawmakers and activists to demand better pay for federal employees across the country.

“When we are united we are strong,” Booker said.

Together they are backing the Fair Act, to give federal employees an 8.7% pay increase.

“We’ve got to stop calling, by the way what I just did, which is a pay increase, which it is not. It’s fair pay,” Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Penn.) said.

Fitzpatrick is one of the few Republicans supporting this bill, and he says this legislation would restore years of lost wage increases for federal employees.

“That shouldn’t be a hard issue for anybody to get behind,” Fitzpatrick said.

But Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) points out that some lawmakers in the House and Senate continue to stand in the way of raising federal wages.

“These are not easy times and it’s not an easy set up in Congress with a Democratic Senate and a Republican House,” Kaine said.

Activists and Unions say the increase is overdue.

“What we are asking for today is that you be given the respect that you deserve,” AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Fred Redmond said.

Booker says he’s seeing more Republicans realize there needs to be a change, and he expects more bipartisan support is coming through.