Equal Pay | KERA News

Equal Pay

In Fort Worth today, Sen. Dan Patrick, a Republican candidate for lieutenant governor, again said he supports equal pay for men and women but he doesn't think government should enforce it. Patrick and incumbent Lt. Governor Davis Dewhurst will face each other in a May 27 runoff for their party's nomination. Dewhurst, who presides over the Texas Senate, has said he would again allow an equal pay measure to be voted on if enough senators wanted that to happen. The legislature passed a bill last session allowing employees more time to file equal pay claims but Gov. Rick Perry vetoed it.

Texas Tribune

Democrats in the Texas Senate are asking the lieutenant governor to investigate pay discrimination for women in state agencies, including the attorney general’s office.

It’s the latest salvo being fired by supporters of Democrat Wendy Davis, who has made equal pay a key issue in her race for governor against Republican Greg Abbott, the Texas attorney general.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

Gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott’s campaign says he would not sign the Texas Lilly Ledbetter Act, a measure that would give women more time to successfully make pay discrimination claims in state court.

Democratic opponent Wendy Davis introduced that measure in the Texas Senate last session.  The legislature passed it, but Gov. Rick Perry vetoed it.

Davis has hammered Abbott on the issue for two weeks claiming he doesn’t have women’s best interests at heart.

Democrat Wendy Davis again accused her Republican opponent for governor of "dodging" when asked if he would have signed state legislation that guaranteed equal pay for women and all Texans. When asked about the Texas version of the federal Lilly Ledbetter law, Abbott told the television interviewer adequate protection already existed. Davis says that's not true in Texas's state courts, where Abbott as attorney general successfully defended the state against a wage discrimination claim made by a female Indian professor at Prairie View A&M University. Here's more on the story:

Wendy Davis campaign / KERA News

State Senator Wendy Davis, a Fort Worth Democrat, says she was surprised and saddened to learn Gov. Rick Perry has vetoed a bill she sponsored which sought to prevent pay discrimination against women in Texas.

Davis says the legislation she carried would have aligned Texas law with federal law by giving women in Texas more time to take action if they believed they were the victims of pay discrimination.