Senate Republicans Block Democrats' 'Paycheck Fairness Act'
Do you support or oppose Democrats’ Paycheck Fairness Act?
What’s the story?
- Senate Republicans on Tuesday voted to block consideration of Democrats’ Paycheck Fairness Act (H.R. 7), which would make it easier for employees to sue their employers for alleged gender-based wage discrimination. It failed on a 49-50 vote with all Democratic senators in attendance voting in favor and all Republicans opposed.
- Tuesday’s procedural vote was to open initial debate on the bill and potential amendments, and the “cloture motion on the motion to proceed” fell short of the 60 votes needed to overcome the legislative filibuster by “invoking cloture.”
- It was the second time the legislative filibuster has been used in the current Congress: the first failed cloture vote occurred May 28th on a bill to establish an independent commission to investigate the January 6th Capitol riot.
- Democrats’ Paycheck Fairness Act passed the House on April 15th on a 217-210 vote that went almost entirely along party-lines, with Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) the only Republican lawmaker to vote in favor.
What would the bill do?
- The Paycheck Fairness Act would revise existing enforcement mechanisms to prevent wage discrimination based on gender. Exceptions in laws that prohibit wage differences between men and women would be limited to bona fide factors — like education, training, or experience.
- Defenses based on bona fide factors could only apply if the employer demonstrates that the factor in question: Isn’t based upon a gender-based differential for compensation; is job-related with respect to the position in question; is consistent with the needs of the business; accounts for the difference in compensation.
- This defense wouldn't apply when the employee can demonstrate that an alternative employment practice exists that serves the same business purpose without leading to a pay difference and their employer refused to adopt that practice.
- The bill would also make it illegal to require employees to sign a contract or waiver preventing them from disclosing information about their wages.
- Read a full summary of the Paycheck Fairness Act here.
What they’re saying
- Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) blasted Republicans for blocking consideration of Democrats’ Paycheck Fairness Act in floor remarks:
“Every Senate Democrat is ready to start debate on the Paycheck Fairness Act. But Senate Republicans seem to be mounting another partisan filibuster against this bill. It’s ridiculous that Senate Republicans would not even allow the Senate to debate a straightforward piece of legislation to help provide equal pay for working women in America, just like it was ridiculous for the Republican minority to filibuster bipartisan legislation to create an independent commission on January the 6th. Americans expect their government to make progress to improve our country, but Senate Republicans once again seem to be choosing obstruction.”
- Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered floor remarks to criticize Democrats for signaling that they will use floor time in a divided Senate to bring up a host of partisan bills that lack the support needed to overcome the legislative filibuster:
“So the question at the outset of this work period is how Democrats will use their razor-thin majority over the next few weeks. Unfortunately, the Democratic leader already signaled his answer a week ago by laying out a June agenda that is transparently designed to fail. As I understand it, Senate Democrats intend to focus this month on the demands of their radical base: Exploiting the cause of pay fairness to send a windfall to trial attorneys… Saddling hospitals, schools, and small businesses with crippling new legal burdens if they fail to keep pace with ‘woke’ social norms… And opening an unprecedented new front in the Left’s war on the Second Amendment.”
- Paycheck Fairness Act: Should It Be Easier for Employees to Sue for Gender-Based Wage Discrimination Unless Differences Relate to Education, Training, or Experience? (H.R. 7)
— Eric Revell
(Photo Credit: iStock.com / jasony00)
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There is nothing I support more than equal pay for equal work, and I really can’t think of anything more American than rewarding people for what they do rather than who they are or where they come from.
I never believed this was common until 2002. New supervisor positions were created in two different departments at my company. Of the 2 people to fill these positions, one a woman the other a man. A little background: the man would be supervising a dept that ran 6 machines that did high-end printing for orders that were 1,000+ piece orders. His responsibilities centered around just the 6 presses. The man had no prior experience as a supervisor or any support capacity of such. The woman would be supervising the dept that filled all customer orders with the material required to be printed. Her oversight included receiving, shipping, industrial cutters, warehousing, customer service support, and order location. She had prior supervisory experience in the military and a large chain department store. He had 6 employees to supervise, she had 18 she directly supervised, and another 123 she supervised indirectly as supporting plant manager whenever the plant manager was absent. The man was given a 50 cent per hour raise, with $1 for every over time and $2 for double time. The woman didn’t at first receive any raise. She went to the president to request a raise, which she received 5 cents an hr. On average men ran the presses, which didn’t require constant attention, the women set up the order, which required constant attention throughout the shift. The man quit after 6 months, of which his pay was not reduced. She stayed on until 2012. I was the woman and was so angry and close to quitting. The disrespect was crushing, but they continued to place me in vital areas that kept the company running smoothly. I was doing the work of 4 people. I decided I would get my degree, so I continued to work full time while going to school part time. I quit when the company had forced the 2nd shift plant manager to retire and decided they wanted me to fill that position... without the pay or benefits package plant managers received. I decided school was a better option. After I left I learned my quitting caused the company to have to hire 4 more people just to cover my areas of responsibility. Paycheck fairness should be a no-brainer. On average, women do work harder, longer and more. People should be paid for that, and less lackluster employees should be paid for what they do or don’t. Paycheck fairness would bring in higher quality employees to companies that need hard workers.
Repugnantcans always block legislation that doesn’t give corporations and themselves a huge pocket full of cash. Dissolve the GOP and create a really responsible centrist Conservative party like the GOP during Ike’s time.
The only employers who seriously oppose this law are those who are discriminating and would receive its comeuppance. Not only should legal recourse be given to protect discriminated against employees, all income data should be public and accessible. Employees are part of the team that makes a company successful and should have clear access to all the information they need to protect themselves.
GOP keeping the archaic status quo in place. Avoiding accountability while exclaiming their opponents must be held accountable . SMH No honor as a human.
This is not a bill for Democrats or Republicans, it is a bill for WORKERS! Something on the order of 80% of the population would be positively affected with no significant negative results. Did those people run on the platform that they would help keep the country as poor and unfair as possible?
It’s time for equal pay
I oppose the Paycheck Fairness Act. Please Vote no.
Get tougher and advertise in these Red States!
What is the GOP afraid of? That women might actually make a fair wage? Oh, the HORROR! Before long, they’ll think they have better ideas! Time to vote the old, misogynistic men out of office. Bring in the election cycle.
Support working Americans! End the political posturing and R blocking if everything D.
There are already mechanisms available to address this issue. The only winners if this passes would be attorneys.
Not only do I support it but I would go further. Make all salary public to all other employees. Salary shouldn't be hidden away, enabling envy by other who assume you make more than them. It also allows for this practice of gender discrimination to occur.
Our country can’t continue to prosper as long as huge wage inequalities exist across American society and while the Middle Class continues to shrink.
First off, the republican party has ceased to exist since the tea party revolution. This was the first step to what they are now, the murdering insurrectionist party. Of course, they retain obstructionist values. Still the party of NO. Chairman Mao McConnell does not care about America, just cares about keeping his absolute corrupt power. NO to paycheck Fairness, NO to independent commission on the insurrection. NO, NO, NO, that is all you hear. They are a waste on taxpayers money.
“As long as legislators value a win for their tribe over a win for the majority, they will continue to get dangerously creative on Election Day. “ Jon Grinspan
Gop and their ignorant ilk, supporters think that rank & file make too much and receive too many benefits. The significant and sudden increases in cost of basics has more than offset everything received let alone catching up with arrears.
WTF?!!? Why is anyone still listening to Mcconnal!?!! End the filibuster!!!
Of course the f------ Republicans are blocking this bill. They don't want to do anything that helps the average American, but man, let's not do anything that requires the wealthy and big corporations to pay their fair share or to provide a liveable salary. Heaven forbid we inconvenience the rich and big business.
There is nothing 'fair' about this legislation. It fails to help anyone other than trial lawyers and should be rejected