News

Senate Republicans block ‘paycheck fairness’ bill

Senate Republicans block ‘paycheck fairness’ bill

PAY:President Barack Obama signs two new executive actions aimed at increasing transparency about women's pay during an event at the White House in Washington April 8. Photo: Reuters/Kevin Lamarque

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Senate Republicans on Wednesday blocked a bill that Democrats said would give women a “fair shot” at obtaining equal pay to men for comparable work.

On a 53-44 vote, supporters fell short of the needed 60 votes to advance the bill. Republicans called the measure a political ploy whose purpose was not to promote pay equity but to attract women voters to the Democratic side in the November elections.

Forty-two Republicans and one independent, Angus King of Maine, voted against the bill. Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid switched his vote from yes to no to reserve his right to bring up the bill again. Democrats cast all 53 yes votes.

The action came a day after President Barack Obama signed two executive orders to help close what has been a long-time gender pay gap by requiring federal contractors to disclose more wage data and allow employees to share salary information.

The Senate Democrats’ Paycheck Fairness Act would have impose the same requirement on private employers.

But Republicans dismissed the bill, saying pay discrimination is already illegal and that better enforcement, not new laws, is what is needed.

They also said the bill would prompt frivolous lawsuits and discourage companies from hiring women, thus hurting those who it seeks to help.

(Reporting by Thomas Ferraro; Editing by Bill Trott)

Recent Headlines

in National

GM recalls 717K vehicles, not for ignition switches

generalmotors

General Motors Co. announced six recalls covering more than 700,000 vehicles in the United States for varying reasons.

in National

Senate panel approves Veterans Affairs nominee

mcdonald

Bob McDonald, President Obama's choice to run the VA, looks set for an easy Senate confirmation.

in Sports

Broncos’ owner Pat Bowlen battling Alzheimers, steps down

patbowlen

Bowlen, 70, is one of the NFL's most well-known owners and guided the Broncos to six Super Bowl appearances during his 30 years at the helm.

in Lifestyle

Target hopes to make shopping a ‘snap’

target

The In a Snap app will let you scan items in magazines and add them to your shopping cart.

in National, World

Plane with first coffins of MH17 victims leaves Ukraine

mh17

A Dutch air force plane carrying the first 16 coffins with the remains of victims of the downed Malaysian airliner is on its way to the Netherlands.