Author Archives: ccd4

It takes a lot more than votes to know what needs to get done

from Katie Muth, CCDC-endorsed candidate in PA Senate district 44:

I have spent the past 11 months reaching out to members of our community and listening to the issues that they feel are most important to them. Time and time again, people tell me that they feel that the government does not work for them and that their elected officials do not listen to their concerns. I agree. As a child who was raised in a working-class family founded on hard work and as a candidate working full time to help pay her student loan debt, I am tired of seeing our elected officials here in Pennsylvania short change the middle class.

The Pennsylvania State Senate has been under Republican control since 1993 and over that time the middle class has seen little to no wage growth. People in our community are doing all that they can to support their families with the hope of a better tomorrow. I am ready to be a strong voice for hardworking Pennsylvanians and will fight to make sure that no one is left behind. We have to swing that massive pendulum back in the other direction and take our seat at the table.

Find out more about Katie Muth and donate here.

Unaccountable Government

Fair Districts PA, April 12, 2018. [n.b. One of the would-be unaccountables is Stephen Barrar, R PA-160, to be opposed in this year’s election by Anton Andrew or Cathy Spahr, whichever wins the Dem primary (see here for info on both).]

On April 11, 2018, the House State Government Committee held a voting meeting on HB 722. An amendment was proposed that guts HB 722 and gives even more power to legislators. It passed.

Below are Carol’s transcribed remarks and the related video.

“What we just saw was a blatant demonstration of unaccountable government. The chair of this committee announced at the end of the session yesterday that there would be a voting meeting today at 10:30. He did not announce what that meeting would be about. They did not give any material or agenda to the committee members until they arrived this morning at 10:30. At 10:30, he distributed his amendment of House Bill 722. His amendment would, rather than put in place an independent citizens’ redistricting commission, would instead put the power even more firmly in the hands of the majority in both of the houses.

“So rather than an independent commission, or rather than the five-person commission currently in place, which has two from each party and the fifth chosen by the state Supreme Court, his amendment would allow the majority leaders of both houses to select a person, which would give two from each party, and then both houses would vote for a third person from that house. Which in effect would give the majority party four members of a six-person commission composed entirely of Legislators.

“What we’ve seen is the incredible unaccountable government that results from that kind of gerrymandering, and this was a demonstration. So – at 10:30 this morning, the members of this committee were given a bill which they then voted on and passed by 11:00. They had not read the bill, they had not discussed the bill, they had not invited the prime sponsors of the original bill to explain their bill or to answer questions. There was no debate. There was no transparency. There was just this blatant attempt to bypass the public interest in an independent commission.

“Now, I will say: don’t be disheartened. This is not the end of the story.

keep reading at Fair Districts PA

My #MeToo Moment

by Lilly Ledbetter, New York Times, April 9, 2018 (Ms. Ledbetter was the plaintiff in the Supreme Court discrimination case Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.)

Equal Pay Day — the day up to which the typical woman must work in a particular year to catch up with what the average man earned the previous year — always brings back a rush of memories. Not surprisingly, many of them I’d rather forget: the pit in my stomach, for example, that developed when I read the anonymous note left in my mailbox that told me I was being paid a fraction of what other, male supervisors at Goodyear were making. And when the Supreme Court denied me justice in my pay discrimination case.

(Some of them are happier memories, like when President Barack Obama signed into law the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act to ensure other women would not receive the same treatment.)

But this year, Equal Pay Day, which falls on April 10, has brought back a whole different set of memories:

“You’re going to be my next woman at Goodyear.”…

keep reading at New York Times

Breaking into the boys clubs

from Chrissy Houlahan for US House PA-06. N.b. April 10 is Equal Pay Day, showing how far into the next year US women, on average, have to work in order to earn what men earn in 12 months.

I’ve spent my entire life in male-dominated environments.

In high school, I was one of just a couple of girls in my physics and calculus classes. In college, I was one of only 10 women in my engineering major.

After college, I served in the military, which is traditionally an old boys club. Then I joined friends in growing a basketball apparel and footwear company — another industry largely dominated by men.

Now, I’m running for Congress (which is 80% male) from the largest state that doesn’t have a single woman in its delegation. And I’m ready to take on this challenge on day one.

Throughout my life, I’ve seen firsthand how lower expectations are set and fewer opportunities often exist for girls, young women, and young mothers, and how that can unjustly hurt our education, pay, and career advancement.

It’s one of the reasons I’m running for Congress, but we can’t wait until the next election to rally around this issue. Tomorrow marks Equal Pay Day, but the time to take action is now:

Sign our petition now to declare your support for closing the pay gap with policies that help level the playing field, like paid family leave >> Demand Equal Pay Now.

This is a family issue as much as it’s a women’s issue. Mothers are increasingly the primary breadwinners in their families, so short changing their paychecks hurts the entire family and our economy as a whole.

The pay gap is worse for women of color, and women experience a widening pay gap as their careers progress. It feels ridiculous to be fighting this fight in 2018 — but we can’t let up, we need to put pressure on Congress to take action now.

SIGN YOUR NAME

Thanks for using your voice,

Chrissy