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April 10 2018

Equal Pay Day: There's a Lot of Hypocrisy Out There

by Charlotte Hays

Quote of the Day:

Politicians reflexively attack perceived gender bias in private companies. But it’s important to ask how those politicians are doing with their own hiring. Do government payrolls reflect a “gender hiring gap"?

--from Open the Books report on the pay of highly-compensated government employees

Today is Equal Pay Day and I am afraid that there is just a teensy weensy bit of hypocrisy afoot.

Open the Books, which can boast transparency champion and former congressman Tom Coburn as its honorary chairman, has done a study that shows some of the politicians most vocal about a perceived gender-wage gap based on discrimination, should look to their own shops.

Adam Andrzejewski of Open the Books notes on RCP:

It’s Equal Pay Day – an opportunity for activists to raise awareness about the perceived pay gap between America’s working men and women. It’s also an opportunity for politicians to attack gender bias in private companies, as they do throughout the year.

But as politicians point fingers and demand gender equality in private companies around the country, it’s important to ask how those politicians are doing with their own hiring.

One of the noteworthy offenders is our friend from the Golden State:

On Equal Pay Day 2017, [Nancy] Pelosi issued a press release alleging that women in the U.S. who work full time, year-round earn only 80 cents for every dollar earned by men, on average. “Equal pay for equal work is a fundamental principle of fairness in our economy and in our democracy,” the former speaker said. Although Pelosi employed 25 men compared to 30 women, her male employees made a collective $3.1 million while the women made $2.8 million. On average, male employees made $124,404 while female employees made $94,398. Does Pelosi’s call for equal pay not include her own office?

Hugging "Fearless Girl," alas, apparently doesn't really do much beef up hiring practices:

For example, in New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio issues Equal Pay Day proclamations, and, last year, made quite a spectacle hugging the “Fearless Girl” statute that faces the Charging Bull on Wall Street. Yet, 197 out of the 200 top-paid New York City workers are men. In Chicago, Mayor Rahm Emmanuel’s controlled payroll has just 12 females out of the top 100 most highly compensated city employees.

Republicans were also studied.

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy employs ten women and 19 men. Men on average earned $88,289 while women made $75,550.

Speaker Paul Ryan, who voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and has since been relentlessly portrayed as waging a war against women (this was after pushing Granny over the cliff), actually does better than some of his vocal Democratic counterparts:

In 2016, Ryan employed 24 men and 27 women. Collectively, men earned $2.52 million while women earned $2.48 million. On average, male employees made $104,846 while female employees made $91,846.

Nancy Pelosi, are you there?

IIndependent Women's Forum is an educational 501(c)(3) dedicated to developing and advancing policies that aren’t just well intended, but actually enhance people’s freedom, choices, and opportunities. IWF is the sister organization of the Independent Women’s Voice.​
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