Written by CFIF
September 25, 2008
Senator Obama Sinks to New Low in Desperate Attempt to Deceive Swing Voting Block
Through the years, the Center for Individual Freedom's policy disagreements with Senator John McCain have been legion. From McCain/Feingold, to foreign drug importation, to the decisively successful 2001 and 2003 tax cuts, to amnesty for illegal aliens, we have forcefully challenged Senator McCain on many fronts.
Despite these disagreements, however, it is also important that Americans remain fair and objective during this Presidential campaign. More specifically, we cannot stand idle when Senator McCain or any other public figure is subjected to tasteless and meritless attack. And this is one such occasion.
On the flashpoint issue of equal pay for women, Senator Obama is simply lying about Senator McCain's record. Not fudging, not slanting, not merely misinterpreting.
In a recent television advertisement expressly approved by Obama, he contends that John McCain "opposed a law to guarantee women equal pay for equal work." And at a recent campaign appearance in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Senator Obama said, "I'll continue to stand up for equal pay as President. Senator McCain won't, and that's a real difference in this election."
There's only one problem. Equal pay is already well-established law. Indeed, discrimination in pay or any other term or condition of employment on the basis of sex has been illegal under federal law since Senator Obama was a toddler. And as a graduate of Harvard Law School and a former professor of Constitutional law, Senator Obama is well aware of this fact.
For instance, the 1963 Equal Pay Act (EPA) unambiguously prohibits employers from discriminating on the basis of sex. This prohibition applies not only to equal pay for the same job, it bars discrimination in pay even for "substantially equal work."
Similarly, Title VII of the historic 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibits employment discrimination on the basis of sex, as well as race, color, religion or national origin. As stated on the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's (EEOC's) official website, this protection extends beyond pay, and includes discrimination:
"against any employee or applicant in hiring, termination, promotion, compensation, job training, or any other term, condition, or privilege of employment. Title VII also prohibits employment decisions based on stereotypes and assumptions about abilities, traits, or the performance of individuals on the basis of sex. Title VII prohibits both intentional discrimination and neutral job policies that disproportionately exclude individuals on the basis of sex and that are not job-related."
As noted by the EEOC official statement, Title VII's prohibitions against sex discrimination also extend to sexual harassment and pregnancy discrimination. This broad swath of protection puts to rest any assertion that unequal pay is remotely permitted under existing law.
As yet another example of already-existing federal law prohibiting sex discrimination, Executive Order 11246 prohibits all federal contractors and subcontractors, as well as federally-assisted construction contractors and subcontractors, from discriminating on the basis of sex.
Thus, discrimination in pay on the basis of sex is flatly illegal under a myriad of overlapping federal and state laws. And Obama knows it. But he's apparently unwilling to let that stand in the way of a naked attempt to deceive female voters.
Notably, this comes at a particularly embarrassing time for Senator Obama on this very subject. It has been revealed by LegiStorm.com that his own female staffers earn less than his male staffers. Specifically, according to LegiSorm, Senator Obama's female staffers earn only 83 cents for every dollar that his male staffers earn.
Talk about walking the walk.
In contrast, according to LegiStorm, Senator McCain's female staffers earn $1.04 for every dollar that his male staffers make.
But Senator Obama has the audacity to accuse the McCain campaign of shameless tactics?
This election is shaping up as a tight, emotionally-charged and bitter one, and female voters constitute a critical electoral block. But that doesn't justify outright dishonesty by any candidate. Hopefully, this campaign will not descend to these depths again.