Statement ● Jobs & the Economy
For Immediate Release: 
March 27, 2019
Contact Info: 
Mariel Saez 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC - House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) spoke on the Floor today in support of H.R. 7, the Paycheck Fairness Act, which helps close the wage gap and ensure women receive equal pay for equal work. Below is a link to the video and excerpts from his remarks:

Click here to watch the full remarks.

“Mr. Speaker, the American people entrusted Democrats with the Majority, in part, because we pledged to work hard on the issues they care about most, issues affecting their everyday lives.”

“I'm the father of three daughters. They are all extraordinary people. I want them all treated based upon the content of their character and their performance and the duties that they perform – not on the fact that they happen to be daughters and not sons. One of the issues we pledged to address was raising wages, and that includes addressing the gender pay gap, which keeps women from earning their fair share and hurts families and children and all people.”

“The last time I was the Majority Leader, which was from 2007 to 2011, we enacted the Lilly Ledbetter Pay Fair Act to make it easier for women who have faced discriminatory pay and benefits to seek justice… We also passed the Paycheck Fairness Act in that same Congress, but unfortunately, the Senate failed to enact it as well.”

“Now, we've returned to this important work of ensuring equal pay for equal work. Who intellectually can oppose that concept? Who with any sense of fairness and fair play could oppose that concept and precept?"

“It is shameful, Mr. Speaker, that in 2019 – 56 years after President Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act – that we're here fighting for equal pay. A half a century later, women still earn on average 80 cents to a man's dollar, and… that gap is even worse for minorities. Two-thirds of women are now either the primary bread winner or co-bread winner in their households. Make no mistake, this is an economic concern for families across our country. This is not a woman's issue. It is a fairness issue and it is an every family, every person issue.”

“Democrats ran on a platform of raising wages, as I said. We're focused on making sure that more working families can make it in America. That's what this bill will help achieve. I am proud that every Member of the Democratic Caucus… has signed on as co-sponsors of this bill because we believe it's fair; because we believe its right; because we believe it's good for families; and yes, we believe it's good for the American economy.”

“I want to thank Rep. Rosa DeLauro. We hear the phrase ‘keep the faith.’ Rosa DeLauro has kept the faith year after year after year not only with the women of America, but with the families and children of America who rely on women's wages for the quality of their life... Thank you, Rosa DeLauro, for all you've done for our country in keeping the faith.”

“I also want to thank my dear friend and my colleague from my neighboring state, Virginia, [Committee on Education and Labor] Chairman Bobby Scott, for his faithfulness, for his focus, and for his bringing this bill to the Floor so early in our session.”

“I urge my colleagues, as we observe April 2 as Equal Pay Day – a day symbolizing how far into the year women must work to earn what men earn in the previous year, essentially three months of free labor… Let us vote today to make it the last Equal Pay Day, and pass this bill to ensure the promise of economic equality for all."