Obama and McCain: Contrasting Positions on Equal Pay
For the last eight years, and for the dozen years before the Clinton administration, the conservative movement has been shockingly successful in pursuing a key agenda: stocking the federal courts with pro-business judges. "Pro-business" meaning, in large part, judges who think they need to protect businesses from juries, who view lawsuits by consumers and employees against businesses as a nuisance, who want to cap or eliminate punitive damages, etc.
The pro-business agenda was advanced in a distressing way last year when the Supreme Court ruled that women who are denied equal pay must bring a claim within 180 days (in some states, 300 in others) after their pay has been established -- even if they don't know about the discriminatory pay within that time period. The Supreme Court's interpretation encourages businesses to conceal disparate salaries or raises; if they do so successfully, they insulate themselves from accountability for their illegal actions. A more reasonable interpretation of the law, one that is faithful to its purpose of prohibiting discrimination, would start the clock running again with every new discriminatory paycheck. But the Court ruled against that position by a 5-4 majority. [More...]
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