Senate Democrats are planning to bring the Paycheck Fairness Act to a vote
, Greg Sargent reports. The bill, which expands on the Equal Pay Act of 1963 to make it easier to address gender discrimination, was blocked by Republicans in 2010
. Now Democrats will press the issue once again.
Obviously, Republicans are once again going to block fair pay. For Democrats, though, bringing the Paycheck Fairness Act up for a vote doesn't just put Republicans on the record against fair pay for women, it keeps the issue alive. You don't build support for a bill by letting it languish in obscurity for years and pulling it out when the stars miraculously line up.
That said, getting Republicans on the record is also a priority—and not just Senate Republicans. Mitt Romney's going to have a chance to go on the record about his support, or lack thereof, for equal pay for women in a concrete way. Romney has expressed general support for the broad concept of equity, but hasn't really wanted to go on the record about any specific bills, even the comparatively limited Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. So which will it be? Will Romney use whatever sway he has with Senate Republicans to get Paycheck Fairness a vote in hopes it'll help him with female voters, or will he add this to the long list of reasons for his polling deficit among women? (This is one of those questions that shouldn't be rhetorical, but probably is.)