For the fourth time, the Paycheck Fairness Act, a bill designed to guarantee equal pay for equal work for women, has been blocked
by Senate Republicans.
The bill received a vote of 52 to 40, falling short of the required 60 votes to get over a Republican procedural filibuster hurdle. It received unanimous opposition from the GOP, including the four Republican women Senators.
The Paycheck Fairness Act was designed to address the gender wage gap, which was mentioned by President Obama in his State of the Union address earlier this year to be 77 cents for women for every dollar a man makes.
Democrats are almost immediately portraying the Republicans as the villains in this scenario.
“Republicans have once again told women across the country that they don’t deserve a fair shot at earning equal pay for equal work,” said Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY).
Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV), Senate Majority Leader, agrees: “A woman who performs the same work as a man should be paid the same as a man. Senate Republicans simply cannot accept that notion… American women deserve better.”
The GOP is saying that it opposed the bill this time because it would increase discrimination lawsuits and discourage businesses from hiring women. When the bill failed back in April
, they claimed that women were gravitating towards lower paying jobs.
One of the women who opposed the bill, Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), said that
she believed that the laws currently in place are "adequate," and that the wage gap exists because of "personal decisions that women make to leave the workforce to raise children for a number of years and then return to the workforce.”
Sen. Deb Fischer (R-NE) says that "it's politics."
"It’s a one-sided vote for political reasons, so [Democrats] can use it in campaigns.”
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) slammed Democrats for pushing the issue. “Here we have an international crisis, with the defense authorization bill out there, and we refuse to take it up. We continue to take up issues that he thinks may help them in November. And we’ve got the world in turmoil.”
In contrast, Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) said that her goal is “to have these issues be real and recognized by this country and voted on and passed.”
Hopefully we will, Senator Murray. Hopefully we will.
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