Monday, February 2, 2009

President Makes Down Payment on Obligation to Union Leaders and Trial Lawyers for Electing Him

Re: the so-called Lilly Ledbetter "fair pay" bill --

Questions and answers about the equal pay bill that the House passed and sent to President Barack Obama on Tuesday:
By The Associated Press
Questions and answers about the equal pay bill that the House passed and sent to President Barack Obama on Tuesday:
Q: When may claimants file suits?
A: President Barack Obama is expected to sign the bill into law on Thursday. With that, claimants may file suits immediately under the newly clarified statute of limitations provisions.
Q: The personnel or records involved in original acts of discrimination that occurred years ago may no longer be available. Who is responsible for providing evidence in a discrimination suit?
A: The burden of proof ultimately falls on the plaintiff, or employee. It is up to the plaintiff to show there was the intent to discriminate.
Q: Who is Lilly Ledbetter?
A: Ledbetter,70, worked for the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. in Gadsden, Ala., from 1979 to 1998. Near the end of her career, she received an anonymous tip that she was earning less than her male colleagues. She filed a charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. A jury initially awarded her more than $3 million in back pay and punitive damages, a sum that a judge later reduced to $300,000.
Q: Was there a Supreme Court ruling in the Ledbetter case?
A: Yes. The Supreme Court in a 5-4 ruling in May 2007 threw out Ledbetter's complaint, saying she was required to bring suit within 180 days of the initial act of discrimination even though she was not aware at the time that she was receiving less than her male colleagues.
Q: What does the bill do?
A: It clarifies that the 180-day statute of limitations is extended every time an employer violates the law by issuing a paycheck or engages in other practices that discriminate. Therefore, if an employee alleges that she received a salary 20 years ago that was less than that of male co-workers because of discrimination, each new paycheck since that occurrence would be a new unlawful employment practice that resets the statute of limitations. The bill retains current limits on employer liability by restricting back pay awards to two years.
Q: What is the legal basis of the equal pay bill?
A: Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act makes it illegal to discriminate in paying wages based on race, gender, national origin and religion.

"Letter to the Editor" as published in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Sunday, February 1, 2009, Page B 6:

Unions get their payback
The Obama administration and Congress began their payback to the unions for electing them with the bill that will make it easier for trial lawyers to sue companies on behalf of their "plaintiffs" for pay "discrimination" over years, perhaps decades. That will kill jobs. Add it to the stimulus bill and any "recovery" will be extended to years.
Why don't you present this side of our government to your readers?
Theodore M. Wight

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