Barack Obama, President Obama — March 12, 2011 at 11:19 am

President Obama will push for passage of the Paycheck Fairness Act


When I was a kid, my mom was an ardent feminist and fought hard for women’s rights. We attended rallies, she lobbied her members of Congress, and she was vocally outspoken about it. One of the buttons she wore on her purse was a simple forest green button with a simple white “59¢” it. The “59¢” represented the amount of money that women made, on average, for every dollar a man made doing the same job.

Today, 30 years later, that amount is about 77&cent”.

There is a law that Democrats have been trying to pass for quite some time that would change that. It’s called the Paycheck Fairness Act. It was first introduced in the Senate in 2009 by Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton. It was defeated by only two votes in the Senate.

In his weekly address this week, President Obama called for passage of the Paycheck Fairness Act that will ensure that women are paid the same as men for equal work. In other words, having to use the rights gained by the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act which allows women to sue for equal pay, this law would require equal payment as a matter of law.

I was so disappointed when an important bill to give women more power to stop pay disparities – the Paycheck Fairness Act – was blocked by just two votes in the Senate. And that’s why I’m going to keep up the fight to pass the reforms in that bill.

Achieving equality and opportunity for women isn’t just important to me as President. It’s something I care about deeply as the father of two daughters who wants to see his girls grow up in a world where there are no limits to what they can achieve.

In the year 2011 there is absolutely no excuse for not passing this law. Not. One. Excuse. I’m thrilled to see the President speaking out on this.

Oops. There I go cheerleading again…

I’m just sayin’…

  • Pinkbunny

    That fair pay for equal work is even a controversial bill or even something considered to be debatable, is just idiotic in this day and age. The Repukes don’t just want to put us in reverse into the ditch, they want to reverse us all the way back to the stone ages!

    • gc

      Hey my friend – great to see you here.

      Reading about that other party, why do I keep flashing on Mad Men?

    • LilaF

      It is amazing isn’t it? You wouldn’t think it would be something lawmakers would even hesitate over. What could be more clear cut and fair than requiring equal pay for equal work? I will never understand any woman who votes for Republicans.

  • samcdc

    In the year 2011 there is absolutely no excuse for not passing this law. Not. One. Excuse.

    How about: “Obama is in favor of it so I’m against it”? You know as well as I do that is now considered a legitimate excuse among the ignorati, frustrati, political converterati, and the bi-partisan “I’m-smarter-than-any-Black-guy” coalition.

    Glad the President is making a point that has to continue to be made, as he has on so many fronts. The willful ignorance is appalling.

    But thanks for point out that there really is no valid excuse.

    • samcdc

      I should have added that I was raised in a single parent home by a mother who earned $1 an hour before taxes working in a factory. Needless to say, we were never considered to be “well off”.

  • gc

    I will cheer right along side you! And I get your reference correctly, those cretins cheer for their destructive blog often enough – conventions, merchandise…self promoting big time. THIS at least, is important.

  • gn

    “We don’t need this type of regulation. The free market will correct any injustices.”

    –ideologue in the cult of Reaganomics, lol

    Great piece; thanks eclectablog.

  • Carol

    I remember getting a $.25 raise and being told to be grateful…in the mid-70’s….and I worked hard, harder than most around me…my customers were happy waiting, most lined up to see me instead of going to the girls next to me, who were loafing. If I’d been trying to support my son on my own, we would have needed food stamps.
    I’m with the “it’s about time!” folks.
    I wish my Mom had flashed one of those buttons!

  • Aquagranny911

    Great diary, Eclectablog. I’ll share this. The first job I did at age 12, besides babysitting, was picking fruit along with other girls and boys. We were paid by the basket of collected fruit. When we girls found out that the boys were getting paid 5 cents more per basket than us, we complained to the farmer. We were told that the boys got paid more because they were boys and worked harder. Yet we girls actually picked more and had less damaged fruit. I think that’s when I became a confirmed feminist and also discovered that lots of things in life are not ‘fair.’ That was 55 years ago and we still fighting for equal pay for equal work.

    • This is a GREAT story. Have you ever thought of writing it up in more detail?

      I’ll publish it. Let’s talk.


      • Aquagranny911

        Ah, Kiddo that was so long ago that the details still sticking in my mind was feeling, hot, sweaty, dirty and achy at the end of the day and also a deep resentment that my work had less value than boys. I couldn’t quit because my family need my contributions to the family coffers and there was not much other work for a 12 year old girl where I lived. So I just worked harder to pick more.

        One other thing I noticed and remember was the different ways boys and girls worked. The baskets were really heavy when full and the boys would often drag them individually to the harvest center which is how fruit got damaged. We girls would help each other carry our baskets, one on each handle. There was less competition among the girls and more cooperation. Our competition became a contest to beat the boys and pick more and better.

        • Aquagranny, you’ve already written a big piece of it. Hot, sweaty, dirty and
          achy memories touch people and inform our actions today. Please consider
          expanding on this. I’ll give you a fireside rocking chair from which to share
          your story. I’ll even put a pootie on your lap ; )

          I’m not saying this lightly. I have never offered my blog up for another
          person’s use. I’m offering it to you. Let’s tell this story. Give it some



          • Aquagranny911

            You have honored me so much. I don’t know what more I can say but I will think on this and try. I trust you will edit me and correct me if necessary. I can’t spell for spit, thank all the gods/goddesses for spell check and dictionaries. I’m also a very slow typist with two fat fingers. You realize also, that my memories are clouded by time. Mostly what I have left are feelings.

          • Share your hot, sweaty, dirty, achey feelings, I will be your editor, and will put it into a larger, current context. It will be magic. Trust me. I will honor your story as it deserves to be honored.

            Here’s the thing: people need to understand that there are people in our society RIGHT NOW that can remember flagrant inequities like this. What Democrats are trying to do with this legislation is out an end to it, including the subtle inequities that are not so obvious.