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Gender pay-gap and GOP idiocy

There was an article in the New York Times the other day on the latest failed effort to pass legislation that would help close the pay-gap between men and women. The bill, which would allow unencumbered access to salary information, was proposed by Democrats and supported by a clear majority of the Senate only to be derailed by a Republican filibuster. In describing this non-event the Times reported that Republican lawmakers:

“… have said that given existing anti-discrimination laws, the legislation is redundant and is a transparent attempt by Democrats to distract from President Obama’s much-criticized health care law.”

If the pain of reading this sentence wasn’t so great it might have provided a good laugh, the kind we all need to start a day off. Two points that the GOP seems to think are worth making are prominent:

a. that a bill that would help lessen the glaring gender discrimination in pay isn’t needed because such legislation is already in place.

b. that it is merely a distraction from discussions of Obamacare.

Well the first is obviously a stupid thing to say. If the existing legislation were working then the pay-gap would be shrinking and women’s incomes would be going up relative to men’s. They are not. Hence existing legislation isn’t working and there is a compelling need for new regulations and oversight.

The second is even stupider (if that’s possible). The Affordable Care Act is here. It isn’t going away. It is working and will continue to improve virtually every aspect of health care in the country. The GOP assumed, as recently as two weeks ago, that they would be able to run their election campaign on “Obamacare” this year. It is now apparent that they cannot and will not. If anything, the Democrats will run on it as a signature success.

As readers of this blog know, I am a great fan of the ironic moment. Here we have another beauty, courtesy of GOP idiocy.

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