Senator Barbara Mikulski and Lily Ledbetter
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Republican legislators have blocked a bill in the US senate that would have made it easier for women to sue their employers to ensure pay equality…With politicians voting along exact party lines on Wednesday, the Paycheque Fairness Act introduced by Democrats fell eight votes shy of the 60 necessary to make it to the senate floor for debate.
“It’s a very sad day here in the United States senate, but it’s a sadder day every day when paycheck day comes and women continue to make less than men,” Barbara Mikulski, the longest-serving woman senator and a supporter of the bill, said after the vote.
The White House had been an advocate of the bill, which Democrats said would have strengthened laws against wage discrimination by barring companies from retaliating against employees who voluntarily share pay data with colleagues, and would have made it easier for women to file pay discrimination lawsuits…
Mitch McConnell, the senate minority leader, said no Republicans were voting for the legislation because…blah, blah, blah. He lies like a rug.
Lilly Ledbetter, the woman whose name was attached to prior equal pay legislation that became the first bill signed into law by Obama in early 2009, watched the procedural vote from the senate gallery.
“This is not right. This country is smarter, we’re better than this,” she said…
Today’s Republicans have never encountered a bill supporting and expanding civil rights and civil liberties they didn’t oppose. The lies advanced to rationalize away opposition vary from year to year, bill to bill. The truth remains the same. They can’t countenance every American having an equal opportunity to succeed.