By a vote of 58 to 41 this morning, the Senate effectively blocked the Paycheck Fairness Act (S.3772) by failing to garner the 60 votes necessary to invoke cloture on the legislation. This was a tough vote for many due to the sound bite appeal of the bill’s title, but in the end they did the right thing and voted for jobs. Supporters claim that the bill would have established gender pay equity in the workplace. Unfortunately, the legislation would have done nothing to prevent actual instances of illegal discrimination. Instead, it would have posed a tremendous threat to manufacturers’ efforts to create and retain jobs by inviting uncertainty to almost every pay decision employers make. Manufacturers are committed to fair pay in the workplace, but it is difficult to imagine a scenario in which this bill would not have led to lower wages and fewer jobs.
The Paycheck Fairness Act would have invited unwarranted and costly litigation against employers at a time when businesses are struggling in the weak economic recovery. We appreciate that the Senate recognized this misguided bill’s harmful impact on job creation and prevented it from moving forward. With today’s vote now behind us, we remain committed to working with Congress to prioritize proposals that will promote economic growth and help manufacturers create jobs.