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 Viral Videos

This is the greatest Ice Bucket Challenge fail. Period.

Fresh
18-overlay6

WATCH: A girl attempts the Ice Bucket Challenge immediately after having her wisdom teeth removed. It backfires miserably.

in National

Brace yourself: ‘Farmer’s Almanac’ calls for cold winter

Fresh
polar

The almanac predicts a "super-cold" winter in two-thirds of the country.

in Viral Videos

What Nick Offerman thinks about in the shower

Fresh
21-overlay7

These genius thoughts prove Nick Offerman is more than just a simple man with a glorious mustache.

in Sports

European soccer clubs opening U.S. academies

soccer2

More American kids are harboring dreams of becoming the next David Beckham or Leo Messi.

in Sports

Thursday’s Sports Minute

nationals

Here are the sports headlines making news today, Thursday, Aug. 21.