Sen Barack Obama focused on women yesterday and unleashed his economic plan for women. In New York, he attended a breakfast for women with Sen. Hillary Clinton before speaking at a town hall meeting in Fairfax County, VA.
Obama’s economic plan for women includes increasing the minimum wage to $9.50 per hour by 2011, giving 8.4 million women a raise of up to $4,700 a year. He also proposes to increase retirement saving options for 45 million women by providing a new automatic workplace pension and a $500 matching tax credit for their savings.
Obama’s plan supports closing the gender wage gap. He voted in favor of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2007, which is currently stalled in the Senate following a Republican filibuster in April. If passed, this bill would correct the US Supreme Court decision in Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire Rubber Co., Inc. that guted the ability of women workers to sue for wage discrimination..
“We won’t truly have an economy that puts the needs of the middle class first until we ensure that, when it comes to pay and benefits at work, women are treated as the equal partners that they are,” said Obama, according to the Washington Post.
The presumptive Republican nominee, Sen. John McCain, did not cast a vote on the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, but said, according to the Associated Press, he “thinks the Supreme Court got it right,” and “this kind of legislation opens up to lawsuits for all kinds of problems.”