A group of Democratic female senators on Wednesday declared war on the so-called “gender pay gap,” urging their colleagues to pass the aptly named Paycheck Fairness Act when Congress returns from recess next month. However, a substantial gender pay gap exists in their own offices, a Washington Free Beacon analysis of Senate salary data reveals.
Of the five senators who participated in Wednesday’s press conference—Barbara Mikulski (D., Md.), Patty Murray (D., Wash.), Debbie Stabenow (D., Mich.), Dianne Feinstein (D., Calif.) and Barbara Boxer (D., Calif.)—three pay their female staff members significantly less than male staffers.
Murray, who has repeatedly accused Republicans of waging a “war a women,” is one of the worst offenders. Female members of Murray’s staff made about $21,000 less per year than male staffers in 2011, a difference of 33.8 percent. A significant “gender gap” exists in Feinstein’s office, where women also made about $21,000 less than men in 2011, but the percentage difference—41 percent—was even higher than Murray’s.
Other notable Senators whose “gender pay gap” was larger than 23 percent:
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.)—47.6 percent
Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D., N.M.)—40 percent
Sen. Jon Tester (D., Mont.)—34.2 percent
Sen. Ben Cardin (D., Md.)—31.5 percent
Sen. Tom Carper (D., Del.)—30.4 percent
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D., Minn.)–29.7 percent
Sen. Kent Conrad (D., N.D.)–29.2 percent
Sen. Bill Nelson (D., Fla.)—26.5 percent
Sen. Ron Wyden (D., Ore)—26.4 percent
Sen. Tom Harkin (D., Iowa)—23.2 percent
Sen. Sanders, who is an avowed socialist who caucuses with the Democrats, has the worst gender gap by far. He employed more men (14) than women (10), and his chief of staff is male. Like many of his fellow partisans, he has previously accused Republicans of “trying to roll back the clock on women’s rights.”
My wife has always made more money than me….but then, I’m much happier than she is.