Washington, DC, United States (4E) – The Senate voted 53-44 to reject the Paycheck Fairness Act on Wednesday preventing the Democrat-sponsored bill that closes the pay gap between men and women from getting past the chamber’s filibuster stage.
The bill authored by Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) had 52 co-sponsors and needed 60 votes to get a majority nod, but not one Republican senator voted for it. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had to change his vote to “no” after the votes went 54-43 in a procedural maneuver that allows him to reintroduce the bill.
Reid accused Republicans of not being interested to close the wage gaps for working women.
The Paycheck Fairness Act makes it illegal for employers to retaliate against a worker who inquires about or discloses her or his wages or the wages of another employee in a complaint or investigation. It also requires the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to collect pay information from employers. The aim is to achieve transparency in worker pay.
Republicans, however, existing laws against discrimination based on gender makes the bill redundant.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell claimed on Wednesday that women’s wages have actually declined over the past five and a half years under the Obama administration. He said the bill is an attempt by Democrats to paint Republicans as unsympathetic to women in the work force for this election year.
Republicans also do not believe in the White House’s claim that women earn only 77 cents for every dollar that men earn.