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Lone Star Project Report

Equal Pay for Equal Work: A Basic Texas Value

Texas Republicans oppose Texas moms earning equal pay for equal work

When a wife or mom are paid less than men for the same work, then the whole family is being cheated.  Equal pay for equal work is about more than fairness—it is about fundamental Texas values and strong healthy families.
 
Pay equality is a straightforward, commonsense concept supported by Texans across the board. However, Texas Republicans from Greg Abbott to Dan Patrick to Cindy Burkett are blocking legislation that would make sure Texas mothers, daughters, sisters and wives are paid fairly for their hard work.   
 
Legislative Republicans: Ignoring Texas values one session at a time
Texas Democrats have taken the lead in fighting for Texas women and their families. In 2013, Democratic State Rep. Senfronia Thompson authored a Texas version of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act which would have outlawed corporate wage discrimination against wives, moms and daughters. The bill was ultimately vetoed by then-Governor Rick Perry.
 
Perry got away with his veto because 61 Texas House Republicans and 15 Republican State Senators propped him up by voting against the bill.  A lot of those Republicans are still around, including Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, State Sen. Joan Huffmnan (SD17- Houston), State Rep. Cindy Burkett (HD113- Sunnyvale), State Rep. Angie Chen Button (HD112- Garland), State Rep. Gary Elkins (HD135- Houston), State Rep. Jason Isaac (HD45- Dripping Springs), and State Rep. Bill Zedler (HD96- Mansfield).
 
During the last legislative session,  83 State House Republicans blocked an amendment to simply study pay inequity within state government. Nonpartisan reports have already shown that women who work for the state of Texas are paid less than men doing the same job. A straightforward study should not have been controversial, but Texas Republicans like State Rep. Rodney Anderson (HD105- Grand Prairie), State Rep. Dwayne Bohac (HD138- Houston), State Rep. Tony Dale (HD136- Cedar Park), State Rep. Linda Koop (HD102- Dallas), State Rep. Jason Villalba (HD114- Dallas), and State Rep. Paul Workman (HD47- Austin) all refused to examine the problem of pay inequality and consider a solution.
 
Greg Abbott fails Texas families
Like Rick Perry before him, Greg Abbott has been a staunch opponent of equal pay for equal work.  In fact, Abbott’s  opposition dates back to well before his election as Governor.  During the 2014 campaign, the Texas media highlighted how Abbott’s own AG office payed women less than men for doing the same job, and how Abbott worked to block Texas women from filing fair pay claims in court.
 
While Rick Perry was fairly open about his opposition to equal pay, Greg Abbott has dishonestly presented himself as a defender of women, while downplaying his opposition to fair and equal pay.  Abbott knows that his opposition to equal pay for equal work is in conflict with basic Texas values and sets him at odds with most Texans.