McCain Surrogate Farrow: McCain Supports Equal Pay for Women

Sep 08, 2008

During Televised Appearance, Surrogate Margaret Farrow
Reveals McCain’s True Colors on Equal Pay for Women


MADISON – John McCain only supports equal pay for women “in concept”, according to former Lieutenant Governor and McCain surrogate Margaret Farrow. The comments were made during a televised appearance, in which she conceded that McCain had voted against measures to advance equal pay for women, but still supported the “concept” of equal pay. (Source: WISN-TV’s Up Front with Mike Gousha, 09/07/08, http://www.wisn.com/video/17413219/index.html)

“Women aren’t making 70 cents on the dollar ‘in concept’ – that’s a reality,” said Democratic Party of Wisconsin Vice Chair Lena Taylor.


“When John McCain’s response to equal pay is that women need more ‘education and training,’ and his chief economic advisor’s response to the economy is that we’re in a ‘mental recession’ and we’re a ‘nation of whiners,’ it shows that McCain is out of touch and just doesn’t get it. American families, and women in particular, are facing real challenges that require real solutions, and John McCain isn’t offering any,” Taylor said.

Transcript of Lt. Gov’s Farrow’s Comments and
Facts on McCain’s Opposition to Equal Pay:


LAWTON: Hillary Clinton supporters were excited about a woman who would bring great substance and dignity to a world stage but who would also be there for them to make sure that finally women would have an equal pay for equal work, which John McCain has voted against every opportunity he has.


FARROW: But he supports the concept.


LAWTON: But he’s voted against it.  […]


FARROW: John McCain voted against the Ledbetter bill, that would have said we are taking away the statute of limitations.


LAWTON: But Margaret, he’s voted against it before that as well.


FARROW: But he is clearly supporting the concept.



·        McCain Skipped Important Vote On Pay Discrimination. McCain was one of two senators to miss a vote on the bill that would amend the 1964 Civil Rights Act to allow employees to file charges of pay discrimination within 180 days of the last received paycheck affected by the alleged discriminatory decision. (Source: 2008 Senate Vote #110, 4/23/2008)


·        McCain Said He Did Not Believe The Pay Discrimination Vote Would Have Done “Anything To Help The Rights Of Women.” At a campaign event in Rochester, Minnesota, McCain said, “…I believe that it was the correct decision of the United States Supreme Court and I don’t believe that this would do anything to help the rights of women except maybe to help trial lawyers and other members in that profession.”  (Source: CNN Live Feed, Town Hall (Rochester, MN), 5/7/2008)

·        Legislation Was Based On 5-4 Supreme Court Ruling Stating That Women Only Had Six Months From First Instance Of Unequal Pay To Sue Her Employer. According to the Associated Press, “The Supreme Court on Tuesday limited workers’ ability to sue for pay discrimination, ruling against a Goodyear employee who earned thousands of dollars less than her male counterparts but waited too long to complain. The 5-4 decision underscored a provision in a federal civil rights law that sets a 180-day deadline for employees to claim they are being paid less because of their race, sex, religion or national origin. Without a deadline, Justice Samuel Alito  wrote for the court, employers would find it difficult to defend against claims ‘arising from employment decisions that are long past.’… The decision broke along ideological lines… Ginsburg said in court Tuesday for the dissenters: ‘In our view, this court does not comprehend, or is indifferent to, the insidious way in which women can be victims of pay discrimination.’ She noted that Ledbetter’s pay started out comparable to what men were earning but slipped over time.” (Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co.) (Source: Associated Press, 5/29/2007)

  • McCain Chose To Protect Employer’s Profits Over Affording Women A Wider Window To Sue For Pay Discrimination.  Speaking at a town hall in Rochester, Minnesota, McCain said, “Um, I think you’re referring to a, to a vote recently that would allow, uh, which would have eliminated the statute of limitations on lawsuits for, uh, for charges or allegations or uh, uh discrimination. Uh, I think that if you eliminate the statute of limitations and make it, uh, uh, unending then you have may be violating the rights of the individual who’s being sued as well, whether they be a man or a woman.” (Source: CNN Live Feed, Town Hall, Rochester, MN), 5/7/2008)


  • Defending His Vote Against Pay Discrimination, McCain Said Women Need More “Education And Training.” McCain also said, “They need the education and training, particularly since more and more women are heads of their households, as much or more than anybody else. And it’s hard for them to leave their families when they don’t have somebody to take care of them.  It’s a vicious cycle that’s affecting women, particularly in a part of the country like this, where mining is the mainstay; traditionally, women have not gone into that line of work, to say the least.” (Source: Associated Press, 4/24/2008)