US Senate kills Paycheck Fairness Act

Jun 5, 2012


Today, Wyoming’s two Republican senators helped their party block the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would have given women new tools to combat pay discrimination in the workforce. 

Wyoming women make just sixty four cents to every dollar a man makes. That makes the state’s gender pay disparity the worst in the nation. To shrink that gap Democrats offered the Paycheck Fairness Act, which is intended to protect women who want to compare their salaries with the men they work with. And it forces employers to prove any salary differences are job-related – not gender based.

But Wyoming Republican Senator Mike Enzi says Democrats are just trying to score political points.

“This should be called ‘the trial lawyer’s bonanza bill.’ It has nothing to do with the women – they’ll get very little out of it. What it allows is huge class action suits with very little defense by any employer.”

Enzi says if Democrats were serious they’d take up his Workforce Investment Act, which invests money in job training.  

“My Workforce Investment Act would train 900,000 people a year to higher paying, higher skilled jobs. And a lot of those could be women and they’re not interested in taking that up.”

Analysts say the defeat of the Paycheck Fairness Act paints an even starker contrast between the two parties on gender issues ahead of this November’s elections.