Please take action right now by adding your name to our message to members of Congress telling them to PASS ENDA without delay.
Please take action right now by adding your name to our message to members of Congress telling them to PASS ENDA without delay.
The amount that women lose as a result of the pay gap doesn’t just hurt them. Their families also pay the price for this lost income. Here’s what the median pay gap means over the course of just one year: $10,784. The total cost to a woman and her family over the course of her entire working life is staggering: $431,360.
Click through to check out an interactive version of this graphic showing how the pay gap affects women’s lives:
BOTTOM LINE: It’s 2013 and Congress needs to pass meaningful equal pay legislation like the Paycheck Fairness Act. Republicans have blocked this vital bill during the last three Congresses and it’s well past time for them to stop standing in the way of equal pay.
The 10 jobs with the biggest gender wage gap.
Rape culture claims another victim: teen girl kills herself after photo of her gang rape goes viral.
This week in sequestration nation.
GOP-led filibuster of gun violence prevention bill falling flat among growing number of GOP senators.
Sequester forcing cancer patients to travel thousands of miles for treatment.
Interactive: the game of wages.
Report: 243 MILLION Americans affected by weather disasters since 2007.
The Senate is not known for moving quickly, but the past few days have seen a major sprint toward marriage equality among Senate Democrats and even two Republicans. With the evolution of two more senators, Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Tom Carper (D-DE), just today, there are now 50 senators who support marriage equality. With marriage equality-supporting Vice President Biden casting the tie-breaking vote, that means a majority of the Senate is now in favor of equality.
We know precious little about tar sands oil.
Kansas Republicans mock rape exceptions for abortion restrictions as “little gotcha amendments.”
GOP Congressman: If we limit high-capacity magazines, same-sex marriage will lead to bestiality.
Why the LGBT undocumented need immigration reform.
Two-thirds of Louisianans oppose Bobby Jindal’s plan to raise taxes on the poor, slash them on the rich.
The president launches $100 MILLION initiative to map the brain.
Justice Scalia is worse than you already thought.
Yes, the vast majority of our long-term debt is because of Bush-era policies.
Obama administration calls for marriage equality in upcoming Proposition 8 Supreme Court case.
Shocking but true: top GOP senator wants to give the NRA veto power over judges.
Another day, another extreme anti-abortion law enacted by the GOP.
FACT: low tax states have lower economic growth.
A year and a half after the landmark law expired, House Republicans finally relented and allowed the updated and expanded reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) to pass. The bill had already passed the Senate with overwhelming, bipartisan majorities not once, but twice.
We say House Republicans allowed it to pass because they’ve done nearly everything in their power to block it from doing so, including:
Last time VAWA was reauthorized, in 2005, just two House Republicans voted against the measure. Sadly, 138 House Republicans voted against VAWA today. Even more shamefully, 27 House Republicans voted against both the Senate bill and the watered-down version Republicans themselves had proposed.
Take a look at these 27 Republicans. Notice a pattern?
BOTTOM LINE: Reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act is a huge victory for women and their families — a victory that came in spite of the GOP’s best efforts to prevent it.
Climate change and the Arab Spring.
April is known as “Sexual Assault Awareness Month” … Help break the accepted cycle and culture of violence -
Tell Congress to do what is right for ALL victims of Domestic Violence.
What better way for members of the House of Representatives to show ALL victims of domestic violence that as Public Servants, they support and protect the right to live a decent life which includes the pursuit of happiness by passing the Senate version of VAWA S.1925.
The fact is the Violence Against Women’s Act has always passed in both Chambers without a problem is well known, though the Republican led House chose to show overt prejudice against Native Alaskan, Native Americans, Undocumented and LGBT Americans when it rejected VAWA on March 30, 2012.
However, Republicans have yet another opportunity to do what is right. Tell your Republican member of Congress to be on the right side of History and pass the Senate version of #VAWA that protects all victims of these crimes, regardless of their age, gender, race, sexuality, or faith. The mission to continue that conservative party line lives on and seems to insist on taking, stripping, yanking, cutting, slashing away personal power while yelling that they want smaller Government and it defies what Americans are about . Teapublicans in Congress, a small coalition, have made a choice to attack social issues, the decision to go out of their way to filibuster the economy is beyond my understanding.
If you believe Americans have A RIGHT to experience equality in all its forms: voter, union, women’s, gender, minority, and gay RIGHTs -along with more than a splash of compassion for the poor think about the Violence Against Women Act and how it might be affecting your family friends neighbors or co-workers.
on Apr 25, 2012 by SenateDemocrats
Democratic Senators Barbara Boxer (CA), Amy Klobuchar (MN), and Patty Murray (WA) stress the importance of reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act to protect victims of domestic violence, regardless of sexual orientation or background.
President Obama and his administration changed the definition of rape to help more people
Please show support for S.1925, Call your member of Congress Tell them to PASS #VAWA -
A lot of misinformation is being circulated by the bills detractors about S. 1925, the real #VAWA.
Read below for the facts !
(1) Since #VAWA first passed, the number of individuals killed by an intimate partner has decreased by 34% for women and 57% for men. #VAWA has saved lives while saving money, saving $12.6 billion in its first 6 years alone.
(2) S. 1925 saves money by consolidating and repealing more than 15 programs, ensuring more funding will go directly to needed victim services rather than grant administration.
(3) S. 1925 adopts almost word-for-word the accountability measures developed by Senator Grassley for the Trafficking Victims Reauthorization Act.
(4) S. 1925 does not create “new victims” or support “special interests”. The real #VAWA protects all victims of these crimes, regardless of their age, gender, race, citizenship, sexuality, or faith.
(5) Our nation must not say, “There are too many victims” or “You are not the ‘right’ kind of victim”. All victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking deserve help. That is what S. 1925, the real VAWA, does. It’s time – way past time — to do much more to stop this violence, and to protect victims from all walks of life including:
- Lack of services available to LGBTQ victims;•
- Barriers to services for undocumented victims; and•
- Please support VAWA’s Reauthorization.
- Domestic violence affects all of us.
- Congress should reauthorize the VAWA and provide funding.
Be a Seed for Change
I was six years old when my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. But my mom is one of the lucky ones, and she survived after undergoing a mastectomy — a procedure that removes one or both breasts — when she was just 36 years old.
Even though she’s been cancer free for over 21 years, my mom still struggles to find bras for women missing a breast that are not only comfortable and attractive, but affordable. I’ve been a Victoria’s Secret customer for years, and I know they’re outspoken supporters of women with breast cancer.
Now I’m asking them to act on their word by making a “Survivor Bra” for women who have lost one or both of their breasts due to cancer. I started a petition on Change.org asking Victoria’s Secret to be a leader for survivors of breast cancer by making a bra that is comfortable for women who have had mastectomies. Click here to sign my petition.
My mom is amazing. Even when she was going through exhausting chemotherapy — all while raising me — she never complained. Now, after years of being cancer free, my mom still has to drive to an expensive specialty store just to find bras and swimsuits that fit.
Cancer survivors, especially women who have had a mastectomy, often struggle with their image and self-confidence. With thousands of stores located across the country and online, Victoria’s Secret could provide breast cancer survivors everywhere with access to better bras.
Victoria’s Secret’s parent company has publicly said that “breast cancer is an issue close to many of us.” I believe that with your signature, they will do the right thing and become a leader in helping women with breast cancer feel beautiful again after a mastectomy. They’ve responded to public pressure like this before, and now you can help get them to respond again.
Thank you for your support!
Allana Maiden Richmond, Virginia
After weeks of tense negotiations and drama (a detailed blow-by-blow can be found here), Congress finally managed to solve at least part of its latest manufactured crisis. After the country had technically already gone over the so-called “fiscal cliff,” the Senate overwhelmingly passed a compromise tax plan early Tuesday morning and the House followed suit late Tuesday night after a rebellion by rank-and-file House Republicans petered out.
Here’s some numbers to know about the deal (officially called the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012):
– 2: The number of decades since there has been a major tax increase on the wealthy.
– 39.6: The rate those earning more than $400,000 ($450,000 for a couple) will pay, the same as under President Clinton.
– 99 percent: The percentage of taxpayers who will keep Bush-era income tax rates.
– $73,633: The additional taxes to be paid by the average member of the top 1 percent.
– 77 percent: The percentage of household who will see a tax increase thanks to the expiration of the payroll tax holiday in place over the past two years. The expiration of the payroll tax cut and failure to replace it with something similar will deal a significant blow to the economy.
– $600 BILLION: The amount of new revenue raised by the deal after accounting for money saved by decreased borrowing costs. An additional approximately $130 BILLION is saved through decreased interest on the debt.
– $1.8 TRILLION: The amount of spending cuts put in place by President Obama so far, resulting in a roughly 2.5:1 ratio of programmatic spending cuts to revenue.
– 2 MILLION: The number of unemployed Americans whose extended unemployment benefits will continue.
– 20+ MILLION: The number of people who benefit from vital tax credits for students and both poor and middle class families that were extended for five years.
– 37,000: The number of jobs saved by the extension of wind energy tax credits.
– 3,730: The number of households that will be subject to the estate tax, the rate of which was increased slightly to 40 percent with a $5 million exemption. Without a deal, the rate would’ve reverted to 55 percent with a $1 million exemption. As the Atlantic’s Matt O’Brien noted, “Only 3,730 households will pay the estate tax next year if the exemption is set at $5 million, versus 47,170 if it’s set at $1 million.”
The deal also many other provisions, including help for underwater homeowners. Another element of the deal prevented a huge spike in the price of milk that would’ve occurred because House Republicans refused to pass a Farm Bill. Numerous special interest tax provisions, including for NASCAR and rum, also made it into the final package.
The deal also puts off automatic spending cuts known as a sequester for an additional two months. The president and Congress must now identify hundreds of billions of dollars in additional savings and revenues in order to cancel the remainder of these across-the-board spending cuts. While Republicans are once again likely to demand massive cuts to programs like Medicare and Social Security, the president reiterated that the next phase of deficit reduction must also be balanced.
Separately, we officially reached the nation’s borrowing limit on December 31 and extraordinary measures will only prevent the nation from defaulting on its obligations for approximately two months. Congress must do its job and raise the debt ceiling in order to make good on the cost of tax cuts, wars, and other spending Congress has already authorized. As the president noted last night, raising the debt ceiling is not up for debate and we will not repeat the debacle Republicans caused in 2011 when they nearly forced the nation into a default that would’ve triggered a global economic calamity.
Filibuster reform may be delayed a few weeks.
Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) savaged Speaker Boehner (R-OH) for dropping a bill to aid Hurricane Sandy victims.
Boehner may have dropped the Sandy aid bill in order to spite Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA).
House Republicans also blocked the Violence Against Women Act.
How gerrymandering is keeping Democrats from controlling the House.
Arizona’s anti-immigrant law is costing it millions.
Long lines in Florida caused by GOP changes to election laws cost Obama more than 10,000 votes.
District court denies request for “kill list” disclosure.
Despite the drilling boom, U.S. gas prices hit a record high in 2012.
White House White Board – American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012
Deputy Director of the National Economic Council, Brian Deese, explains the bi-partisan deal that was recently completed in Washington and outlines what the deal means for the economy and how it met President Obama’s key economic priorities.
Today marked the end of the 112th Congress. Thanks to almost unyielding Republican obstructionism, the 112th Congress was the least productive in decades. And thanks to what this group of historically partisan Republicans did do (or at least tried to), it was also the most unpopular Congress in history.
Here’s a look back at some of the worst moments of the 112th Congress, courtesy of ThinkProgress’ Annie-Rose Strasser and Aviva Shen:
Back in August of 2011, Congressional Republicans took the United States to the brink of an unprecedented credit default by refusing to agree to any tax increase. Republican hijinks resulted in the downgrading of U.S. credit for the first time in history and cost taxpayers $18.9 billion. Congressional approval ratings also plunged to a record low.
Because of some Congressional Republicans’ opposition to extending protections for LGBT and Native American victims of domestic violence, the House GOP allowed the Violence Against Women Act to expire this year. The bill has enjoyed bipartisan support during every other reauthorization vote. And for a good reason: It is a hugely effective piece of legislation. Now, the program that created a rape crisis hotline, outlawed stalking, and protects victims of heinous violence is hanging in limbo. House Republicans also attempted to change the definition of rape itself in order to deny legal abortions to women who have suffered statutory rape or incest.
The House approved Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) radically destructive budget proposal in April 2011, despite outcry from economists, clergy members, and even would gut food aid, Medicaid and Medicare, and other essential safety net programs. An estimated 48 million people would have been kicked off their health insurance, and more than 1 million students would have had their federal Pell grants eliminated.
The House has voted to repeal President Obama’s Affordable Care Act 33 times, even after the Supreme Court affirmed the law’s legitimacy. Since January 2011, Congressional Republicans wasted 88 hours and $50 million on their failed attempt to repeal health care reform. Repealing the ACA would take away insurance from an estimated 30 million people, while adding over $100 billion to the deficit. After he appeared to accept defeat following Obama’s reelection, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) quickly renewed efforts to undermine its provisions even as public approval for the law grows.
The fiscal cliff is perhaps the greatest example of a 112th Congress boondoggle. When it was created, the goal of the so-called cliff, originally referred to as the “sequester” or the “trigger,” was to force Congress into rethinking taxes and spending by setting a hard deadline of December 31, 2012. Congress felt that such deep cuts to programs favored by both parties — domestic and military spending — would ensure they’d act before they went over ‘the cliff.’ Of course, not only did the House GOP take the US over the cliff before eventually relenting on some tax increases, they also punted the spending cuts, which are now set to take effect in two months.
When the Obama administration secretly approved a $500,000 increase in the now $2 million budget to defend the law. Meanwhile, Americans’ support for legal same-sex marriages is at an all-time high. The Supreme Court will rule on the law’s constitutionality in June.
The House has taken 317 votes against the environment — either in the form of deregulation of environmental standards, or through the promotion of drilling for oil. They’ve also spent over one million dollars on a witch hunt investigation of energy company Solyndra, the conclusion of which was that they found “no evidence” of wrongdoing.
On January 18, 2012, websites across the country — including Google and Wikipedia — staged ‘blackouts’ in protest of the 112th Congress’s poorly thought out “anti-piracy” bill, titled theStop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). Critics of the bill read through it and found that its so-called anti-piracy efforts amounted to nothing more than online censorship that would take away the basic functionality of many popular sites. Just a few days after the blackouts, Congress tabled the bill, finding that it was just too unpopular among constituencies cut across the board.
Former Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-AZ) was shot at a meeting with constituents in an Arizona parking lot. And while the public raged over the incident, Giffords’s colleagues in Congress stayed conspicuously silent about the political issues around the shooting. In fact, it wasn’t before another three mass shootings shook the nation before members of the 112th Congress were ready to talk about gun violence at all. Giffords’ husband called the approach “feckless.”
When House Republicans expressed outrage over the mandate in Obamacare requiring employers provide copay-free contraception to employees, they decided to call a hearing on the issue. Every person they brought forward to testify was a man, and the House Republicansblocked the only woman who was supposed to be a part of the hearing from delivering her testimony. The Senate, meanwhile, rejected an amendment that would have nullified the contraception mandate.
Caitlin Halligan is one of President Obama’s most outstanding judicial nominees. As a former Supreme Court law clerk, former Solicitor General of the state of New York, former head of appellate litigation at one of the nation’s top law firms, former constitutional law instructor at Columbia Law School, and current general counsel for one of the largest prosecutor’s offices in the country, Halligan is far and away one of the most well qualified individuals nominated to the federal bench in any presidency. Yet Senate Republicans filibustered her nomination to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit because she once argued a position on behalf of the state of New York that the National Rifle Association disagrees with. Nor is Halligan the only exceptional nominee filibustered by Republicans for no good reason. Republicans pledged to filibuster any nominee to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in an effort to shut down that agency.
On the bright side, some of our least favorite people won’t be in Congress any more after today. And the 113th Congress that convened today is the most diverse in history and includes many new progressive champions, particularly in the Senate.
On the not-so-bright side, Republicans are already threatening to destroy the economy by allowing the U.S. to default on its obligations, again demanding draconian cuts to Medicare and Social Security, and Michele Bachmann has already introduced yet another bill to repeal Obamacare.
Only time will tell if Republicans will heed the results of the election and work with Democrats to solve our fiscal challenges with a balanced approach and tackle other urgent problems like gun violence, our broken immigration system, and climate change. We sure hope so.