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House Blocks Move To Vote On Paycheck Fairness Act

House Blocks Move To Vote On Paycheck Fairness Act

On Thursday the House of Representatives rejected an effort to bring to a vote the Paycheck Fairness Act, once again turning its back on working women and families.

The fight against pay equity is a key component in the Republican assault on women’s rights. The Paycheck Fairness Act is not a radical piece of legislation, It would close loopholes in existing law, prohibit retaliation against workers who discuss their salaries, reward employers who have good pay practices and provide assistance to those small businesses that need help adopting equal pay policies.

Debra Ness, President of the National Partnership for Women & Families condemned the vote:

At this time when America’s women are still paid only 77 cents for every dollar paid to men, resulting in more than $10,000 in lost income each year, the nation badly needs Congress to pass this bill. Nearly 15 million households in this country are headed by women, nearly 30 percent of them live in poverty, and women are now the primary or co-breadwinners for two-thirds of families. Women’s work is essential, and families suffer when women are not treated fairly in the workforce.  The Paycheck Fairness Act would address discrimination.  It’s a law the nation needs.

The House has passed the Paycheck Fairness Act in the past, and the Senate is scheduled to consider it next week.  Today was an opportunity to advance this legislation, but a majority in the House bowed to special interests and refused even to bring it up for a vote. Those who wonder why some say there is a ‘war on women’ in Congress need only look to today’s actions in the House.  It was a disgrace.

Lisa Maatz, director of public policy and government relations for the American Association of University Women echoed those sentiments:

AAUW is pleased to see this important issue brought before the House and applauds the efforts of Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and pay equity champion Rep. Rosa DeLauro to secure a vote on the Paycheck Fairness Act. We’re deeply disappointed, however, that a majority of their colleagues didn’t also see the wisdom of passing the bill. The House of Representatives had a chance to make real change in the lives of American women and their families today but instead settled on a partisan stalemate.

The sting of gender pay discrimination is real. We know that women are far more likely to spend their golden years in poverty and that it starts the moment we throw our graduation caps in the air. Women’s wages should be determined by the work we do rather than influenced by outdated and discriminatory gender stereotypes. It’s time for our paychecks and our national policies to catch up to the 21st century. AAUW looks forward to the Senate producing a more enlightened vote on the Paycheck Fairness Act next week.

It’s hard to believe Republicans are making a serious play for women voters when they continue to pull stunts like this. So far Republicans have blocked renewal of the Violence Against Women Act and are now getting in the way of pay equity. Women, we must remember this come November.

Related Stories:

Tammy Baldwin Pushes For Equal Pay With New Website

Sen. Gillibrand Renews Call For Paycheck Fairness Act

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Photo from jswieringa via flickr.

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93 comments

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1:42AM PDT on Jun 5, 2012

More BS from the GOP.

3:30AM PDT on Jun 3, 2012

How ANY WOMAN could vote for ANY teabagger/republican is mind-boggling, UNLESS, of course, they are Stepford wives or more likely, brainwashed by Fox and (Lying) Friends.
For a better America, VOTE STRAIGHT DEMOCRAT. Forward, not back!
RECALL that liar Walker!

3:25AM PDT on Jun 3, 2012

How ANY WOMAN could vote for ANY teabagger/republican is mind-boggling, UNLESS, of course, they are Stepford wives or more likely, brainwashed by Fox and (Lying) Friends.
For a better America, VOTE STRAIGHT DEMOCRAT. Forward, not back!
RECALL that liar Walker!

7:45PM PDT on Jun 2, 2012

....Continued. So sorry, my comment got cut off in mid sentence. Too long, I guess. I do that sometimes. So here's the rest of my last comment:

David, I know your heart is in the right place, but you simply cannot walk a mile in these women's shoes. Their destiny should be decided by THEM, not men. No matter how supportive you are, you can never understand or evaluate women's progress or lack of progress, because you are never going to be directly effected by it.

If you watch TV, pick a network, ANY network, you will see panels upon panels of MEN discussing women's rights. You might see a token woman here and there, but always it is MEN discussing what women want and should have. The women here should be deferred to because this is their life being controlled and they simply do. not. like. it. As for Lilly Ledbetter, it might look terrific to a guy, but it's simply a snowball in the summertime for women. Melts right in their hand.

7:42PM PDT on Jun 2, 2012

David, from a Congressional standpoint the Paycheck Fairness Act was never stripped because it died in the Senate. It had nothing to do with Obama and everything to do with not being brought to the floor for a vote at all. This was a Democratic majority Senate in 2009.

Obama took the Lilly Ledbetter part of the bill and exec ordered it. It was a little teeny tiny bone that does nothing in the end but prolong the pain. But most people have been lulled somehow into believing that Lilly Ledbetter means "Equal Pay". I have had members of my own party say to me that I am an ingrate because Barack gave us equal pay. It's apples and oranges. Lilly Ledbetter is NOT a Fair Pay Act.

Someone else here mentioned how woman have taken their rights for granted because someone already fought for them. This is very true. Complacency is causing rights to be whittled away bit by bit. Women must be vigilant because there are many who would love to control women ala 1950s again, and make no mistake they are not all Republicans. I just want you wonderful young people to have the same opportunities I had and it doesn't look good for you. This really bothers me on your behalf. Be vigilant. I would hate to see you have to start all over again with torches and pitchforks as in the past. I wish you nothing but well. Do not be lulled into thinking a party will fix it. Women are and always have been on their own when it comes to equal rights. This hasn't changed.

David, I know your heart is in

2:38PM PDT on Jun 2, 2012

The gop is evil !!!

5:02AM PDT on Jun 2, 2012

What a bunch of sexist, mindless, bigoted idiots! Let's vote them out.

4:06AM PDT on Jun 2, 2012

Because we have taken these things for granted, we are losing battles we thought we won long ago....freedom cannot be taken for granted. Oppression must be battled on all fronts---and the perpetrators watched very carefully for alternative ways to attack the freedoms that cost them money....

9:44PM PDT on Jun 1, 2012

WOW-War On Women marches on.

8:34PM PDT on Jun 1, 2012

Ding. Ding. The start of another round in the Republican Party's War on Women. Only this time it was just a delaying action and not a decisive victory. Cannoy understand how the GOP justifies not paying women firly and expects Willard Mitt Romney to win teh womwn's vote.

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