How Will Heller Vote Tomorrow?

NRSC communications director Brian Walsh went of the attack against Democrats and the Paycheck Fairness Act saying,

“This pathetic political attack is just the latest effort by Senate Democrats to distract Americans from their failed leadership on the economy and it simply drives home how out of touch they are.  While Democrats are busy sending out press releases and ginning up phony attacks, the rest of America is rightfully asking ‘where are the jobs.”

I seriously beg to differ with Mr. Walsh.  For many women across this nation, the Paycheck Fairness Act is very much about economics and the economy.  We work side-by-side with many men, performing the same job with equal proficiency, and in far too many cases, we, as women, are paid differently … predominantly less than our male counterparts merely because of our gender.  Now, adding insult to injury, it’s common practice by corporate America to impose a policy making it a dischargeable office to share information about what you earn with your co-workers.  Excuse me?

Far too many employers employ predatory wages for women and then turn around and employ predatory policies to prevent you from learning about the predation.  The ruling by the Supreme Court basically said that the discrimination begins from the first paycheck … and thus … if an employer can conceal that discriminatory act for the allowable 180 days in which the female employee has to file a case of discrimination …. hey, they’re good to go and can continue that discriminatory practice in perpetuity.

In union environments, if you perform a job covered by the bargaining agreement, you’re paid the same as all others in that job title.  That’s not necessarily the same in non-union environments. And given the GOP’s determination to wipe out unions and impose right-to-work laws uniformly across all 50 states, how do you think women will fare should that become the law of the land?

The majority of the middle class are women, and if you truly understand economics, you know that that makes women true “job creators” across this nation.  In spending their paychecks, they create demand for all types of products and services.  Thus, paying women less puts an automatic damper on demand.  Without demand, employers aren’t going to hire more people to create additional products and services when there isn’t a corresponding increase in demand.  No employer is going to consider increasing supply when there isn’t sufficient demand to recover their cost to produce that product or service.

Mr. Walsh and his GOP brethren, including unelected Sen. Dean Heller, in addition to pushing their supply-side economics hoax that has done nothing more than redistribute our nation’s wealth upward, now want to also ensure that women are incapable of achieving parity in the workplace.

According to AAUW Executive Director Linda D. Hallman, “Empowering women is one investment that always pays long-term dividends, not only for the women themselves, but also for their families and the nation as well. It’s time for the Equal Pay Act to live up to its promise to provide equal pay for equal work.”

Hey Dean—One Vote Isn’t Gonna Do It

Senate Democrats were able to keep the Ryan Budget bill from passing for the second time in as many years. The final vote was 58-41 with five Republicans joining the vote against it: Scott Brown of Massachusetts, Olympia J. Snowe and Susan Collins of Maine, Rand Paul of Kentucky and, wait for it – Dean Heller of Nevada. Yes, the same Dean Heller who previously was “proud” to have been the only member of Congress to be able to vote for it twice. What a difference a senate campaign race makes.

If Mr. Heller thinks that by changing his vote, just one time, on just one bill, is going to change how voters feel about his despicable voting record, he has another think coming.  We looking forward to voting for his replacement.

Excuse Me? Where Were You Mr. Heller?

At the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing yesterday, U.S. Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) spoke about the No Budget, No Pay Act.

“President Obama’s most recent State of the Union address marked one thousand days since the U.S. Senate passed a binding budget resolution.  Since Congress last passed a budget, the federal government has spent $9.4 trillion, adding $4.1 trillion in debt. 

“…Members of Congress are willfully refusing to put our nation on a path to long-term fiscal responsibility.  As long as this is the case, Americans will continue to be frustrated and angry with Washington’s inability to produce real results. 

“…This legislation requires that the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives pass a budget and all appropriations bills by the beginning of each fiscal year.  Failure to do so would result in the loss of pay until Congress takes its job seriously.  If Congress does not complete its constitutional duties, then its Members should not be paid

“…My hope is that No Budget, No Pay will be adopted as part of a broader effort to change the way Congress does business and restore the confidence of the American people in their government…”

Is that right?  I have a question, Mr. Heller.  Where the heck were you throughout the Bush years?  Then President Bush took a vibrant economy, a budget surplus that was gradually consuming lesser percentages of GDP and a national debt of only $5,662,216,013,697 … and drove that economy to just short of a full-blown depression and a national debt of $10,699,804,864,612, an increase of 89%.  In case you’re not all that good at math (as evidenced by the recent GOP caucuses and their inabilities to count the votes) … that means the GOP administration of George W. Bush spent $5,037,588,850,915, borrowing from anyone willing to loan the USA money.  Essentially, your team increased the debt per capita from $20,067/person to $35,153.  You sir were a member of George Bush’s Congress.  You voted for the repeal of financial regulations, for repeals of taxes (revenue needed to pay the bills as they come due) and for spending increases that ultimately drove our economy over the cliff.

Yes, the Obama administration has had to spend money to prevent the nation from completely falling into the abyss of no return.  Beginning with a debt of $10,699,804,864,612, debt rose to $12,311,349,677,512 by 12/31/2009 (15%).  By12/31/2010 it had risen to $14,025,215,218,709 (14%) and by 12/31/2011 to $15,125,898,976,397 (8%),  That’s an overall 41% increase in our nation’s debt, and that rate of increase is declining.  The amount of accumulated debt would have begun to decline had the GOP been able to actively work toward a grand bargain with the President and Democratic members in Congress, but the GOP were too fearful of bullies such as Rush Limbaugh, Grover Norquist, and Karl Rove.  Instead of doing your jobs, you and other GOP members cowered in fear that one of the bullies would speak badly of you or that you might be primaried and lose your job.  Instead of fighting for millions of Americans that the GOP’s policies and spending habits put out on the street and out of any hope of a job, you toed the Republican Party line.

How dare you now play the puffer?  You sir are a considerable part of the problem and your solutions would now be to balance the budget on the backs of the elderly, the infirm, and women, all while stroking the feathers of your war-hawk as you contemplate voting for entry into yet another unwarranted foreign war with Iran.  You sir, are disgraceful.