Thursday, April 24, 2008

McCain votes no on equal pay for women

By Libby Spencer

Well, he didn't actually bother to vote, but he says he would have voted no on a bill that would have repaired damage done by Alito's hamfisted decision in Ledbetter.

Republican Sen. John McCain, campaigning through poverty-stricken cities and towns, said Wednesday he opposes a Senate bill that seeks equal pay for women because it would lead to more lawsuits.

Oh of course. We wouldn't want the courts to used to litigate injustice. Everybody knows the sole function of the judiciary to rubberstamp whatever 'decision' the president makes. And remember how the GOP was caterwauling about up or down votes and threatening the nuclear option to eliminate filibusters?

Senate Republicans killed the bill Wednesday night on a 56-42 vote that denied the measure the 60 votes needed to advance it to full debate and a vote.

Yes, they used a filibuster to kill it. In fact, the GOP minority, as I'm sure you recall, has used the filibuster to block progress more than any previous incarnation of Congress. Why the Democrats aren't vigorously pointing this out every time it happens is beyond me.

Meanwhile, McCain, acknowledges that poverty is worse among women than men. "The Arizona senator said he was familiar with the disparity but that there are better ways to help women find better paying jobs."

"They need the education and training, particularly since more and more women are heads of their households, as much or more than anybody else," McCain said. "And it's hard for them to leave their families when they don't have somebody to take care of them.

Of course, this bill was about equal pay for equally educated workers. And maybe McCain hasn't heard that most families have both spouses working. Or about all those single mothers who hold down three jobs to pay the bills while the day care providers are raising their own kids. And the reason they have to work so hard is because they're not paid as much as men doing the same work thanks to an archiac mindset rooted in the days when most women had the luxury of staying home.

McCain tells the most poverty striken people in America that "I wouldn't be back here today if government had fulfilled the promise that Lyndon Johnson made 44 years ago." As if a guy who owns 13 houses worth $13 million would even recognize poverty if it jumped up and bit him in the ass. Somehow he fails to notice that poverty has grown tremendously in the years GOP held the reins of power and sliced the social safety net to shreds, while passing bill after bill to enrich the already wealthy.

But then, as he admits himself, economics isn't really his thing. But he's sure that cutting taxes for the top 1% of the wealth holders in this country is the answer -- because our current economy is doing just great and that empty wallet in just a figment of your imagination.
(Cross-posted at The Impolitic.)

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