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Policy: Labor

After voting 'no' on Paycheck Fairness Act, Angus King says bill would hurt businesses

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Politics,Congress,Susan Ferrechio,Senate,Labor,Maine,PennAve,War on Women,Gender Issues,Income Inequality,Angus King

Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, released a statement explaining his opposition to the Paycheck Fairness Act, saying it could bring “substantial burdens on businesses.”

King is an independent who caucuses and votes mostly with Democrats. Other than King, all Democrats voted for the bill and all Republicans voted against it.

Democrats are trumpeting the GOP opposition to the bill but have not mentioned King, who explained his 'no' vote in this statement:

“Discrimination of all kinds is wrong. I think a woman ought to get paid as much as men for the same work — that’s just common sense and it’s the law. But I’ve looked at this from all sides — I’ve talked to Mainers, to business leaders, to men and women, and this particular bill, in my view, fails to address the real causes that are driving the wage gap. In addition, the bill could impose substantial burdens on businesses in justifying pay differentials. The way to narrow the wage gap between men and women includes facilitating more family-friendly workplaces, which will allow women to stay in the workforce if they choose to have children; encouraging more girls and young women to pursue higher-paying professions, like science, engineering, law, and medicine; and improving the earning potential for low-wage workers, who are disproportionately women. That’s why I support raising the minimum wage, which the President’s Council on Economic Advisers says will help narrow the wage gap. I support equal pay for equal work, and this was a very difficult vote. In the end, however, I felt this bill will not get us there — and I look forward to working with my colleagues on legislation that will.”

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