News / USA

Anti-Pay Discrimination Bill Blocked in US Senate

President Barack Obama signs executive actions, with pending Senate legislation, aimed at closing a compensation gender gap that favors men, Tuesday, April 8, 2014, in Washington, during an event marking Equal Pay Day.
President Barack Obama signs executive actions, with pending Senate legislation, aimed at closing a compensation gender gap that favors men, Tuesday, April 8, 2014, in Washington, during an event marking Equal Pay Day.
Michael Bowman
The U.S. Senate has failed to advance a bill intended to make it harder for employers to pay men more than women for the same work. The bill is one element of a partisan battle over America’s economic fortunes, with Democrats and Republicans staking out starkly different agendas before midterm elections in November.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, American women earn on average 77 cents for every dollar earned by their male counterparts. That has to change, according to Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren.

“In 99.6 percent of all occupations, men get paid more than women," she said. "That is not an accident; that is discrimination.”

Among other provisions, the Paycheck Fairness Act would boost transparency by protecting employees from retaliation if they reveal their wages to coworkers. Currently, many employers bar their workers from comparing salaries, effectively hiding any disparities.

Democratic Senator Richard Durbin says gender-based pay discrimination punishes women well beyond their working years.

“It is not just less take-home pay for women doing the same job, it means fewer social security benefits when they retire," he said. "They are not earning at the same level as men. They pay for it for a lifetime.”

Democrats are also advocating a raise in the national minimum wage and an extension of benefits for the long-term unemployed. All face significant opposition from Republicans, who accuse Democrats of political posturing to disguise America’s lackluster economic performance under President Barack Obama. Senator John Thune says, “Democrats are playing politics with equal pay and attempting to distract from the real harm that their policies have done to women."

"Right now, there are 3.7 million more women living in poverty than there were when the president took office," he said. "If Democrats were really serious about helping women, they would work with us [Republicans] on bills to create jobs and to expand workplace opportunities for women - and for men, as well.”

Thune said the bill would mire employers in costly litigation that would benefit lawyers more than working women. Senator Durbin disagreed, and said voters will weigh in on the issue in November, when one third of the Senate and all seats in the Republican-led House of Representatives will be contested.

“The American people will have the last word," he said. "They will have it in the election. They can decide if this is important.”

No Republican senators voted with majority Democrats to begin debate on the bill, which fell seven votes shy of the 60 required. The vote came one day after President Barack Obama ordered paycheck protections for workers employed by companies that do business with the federal government.

You May Like

Multimedia Obama Defends Immigration Action

Obama says with his executive action on immigration, enforcement resources will be focused on 'felons, not families; criminals, not children' More

US-Led Airstrikes in Syria Kill Over 900: Monitoring Group

British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the toll includes more than 50 civilians, five of them women and eight of them children More

Report: Obama Broadens US Combat Role in Afghanistan

The New York Times says resident Barack Obama has signed a classified order extending the role of US troops in Afghanistan for another year More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: labman57 from: labman57@comcast.net
April 09, 2014 9:15 PM
Republicans regard the problems and concerns of socio-economically disadvantaged American families, middle class working women, Latinos, and the LGBT community to be a "distraction" from what really matters -- their ongoing quest to increase the economic divide between the ultra-wealthy ... and everyone else.


by: Ames Jofman from: Jofmanville
April 09, 2014 2:56 PM
Another Liberal Screw job. They have you so fooled it is amazing. The decepticon Democrats. Not so liberal afterall.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
New Skateboard Defies Gravityi
X
November 21, 2014 5:07 AM
A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Gay Evangelicals Argue That Bible Does Not Condemn Homosexuality

More than 30 U.S. states now recognize same-sex marriages, and an increasing number of mainline American churches are blessing them. But evangelical church members- which account for around 30 percent of the U.S. adult population - believe the Bible unequivocally condemns homosexuality. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender evangelicals are coming out. Backed by a prominent evangelical scholar, they argue that the traditional reading of the bible is wrong.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Mexico Protests Escalate Over Disappearances

Protests in Mexico over 43 students missing since September continue to escalate, reflecting growing anger among Mexicans about a political system they view as corrupt, and increasingly tainted by the drug trade. Mounting outrage over the disappearances is now focused on the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto, accused of not doing enough to end insecurity in the country. More from VOA's Victoria Macchi.
Video

Video US Senate Votes Down Controversial Oil Pipeline - For Now

The U.S. Senate has rejected construction of a controversial pipeline to transport Canadian oil to American refineries. The $5 billion project still could be approved next year, but it faces a possible veto by President Barack Obama. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the pipeline has exposed deep divisions in Congress about America’s energy future.
Video

Video Can Minsk Cease-fire Agreement Hold?

Growing tensions between government troops and separatists in eastern Ukraine further threaten a cease-fire agreement reached two months ago in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Critics of U.S. policy in Ukraine say it is time the Obama administration gives up on that much-violated cease-fire and moves toward a new deal with Russia. VOA's Scott Stearns has more.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Ferguson Church Grapples with Race Relations

Many white residents of Ferguson, Missouri, say they chose to live there because of the American Midwest community's diversity. So, they were shocked when a white police officer killed an unarmed black teenager in August – and shaken by the resulting protests and violence. Some local churches are leading conversations on how to go forward. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid