The real war on women (and speech): Dick Durbin edition

According to an analysis conducted by Andrew Stiles for the Washington Free Beacon, women in the office of Senator Dick Durbin make 77 cents to each dollar earned by men. Using the sophisticated logic employed by the White House and other Democrats such as Durbin, this shows that Durbin himself is guilty of waging a war on women.

Americas PAC has had the temerity to point this out in radio ads running in Illinois, highlighting “the wage gap” in Durbin’s office. The ad quotes Durbin reciting the misleading proposition that “women earn 77 cents for every dollar earned by men” and, not unreasonably, turns it against Durbin. Americas PAC points out in its press release:

In speeches on the Senate Floor in support of the so-called Paycheck Fairness Act, Senator Durbin frequently states that “women earn seventy-seven cents for every dollar earned by men.” The “seventy-seven cents” figure used by Durbin is calculated by comparing the total earnings of all men and all women with no regard to hours worked, types of work performed and the many of other legal and legitimate factors which can affect pay.

“Why would Democrat US Senator Dick Durbin use a grossly inaccurate statistic to mislead women and push his legislative agenda, then cry foul when the same math is used against him in a political ad?” asked Donelson. “Others just used the same math as Durbin, but applied it to his Senate Staff. If it weren’t for the double standards, Democrats like Dick Durbin would have no standards at all.”

Analysis of Senate Staff payroll by the Washington Free Beacon found that in 2012 Durbin “paid men $13,063 more, a difference of 23 percent.”

“So, when Durbin says ‘women earn seventy-seven cents for every dollar earned by men’ it could also be an accurate description of the pay of his US Senate Staff in 2012,” Donelson said. “I eagerly await the news media asking Senator Durbin directly about his staff’s pay.”

Durbin has responded in the usual thug-Democrat style, with a letter from counsel threatening the radio stations, tacitly confirming the Washington Free Beacon’s analysis and attacking the Washington Free Beacon as an institution. Durbin’s lawyers point out that the women in Senator Durbin’s office “generally make the same or more than their male counterparts doing the same work.” But the Census data on which Durbin draws to make his politically inspired “77 cents” charge don’t adjust for such niceties as “the same work” either, and that doesn’t stop Durbin from reciting it as evidence of discrimination requiring a remedy. All of a sudden, in his own case only, Durbin is a stickler for appropriate statistical methodology. The press release continues:

A letter from the Washington D.C. law firm Perkins Coie LLP on behalf of Durbin’s campaign does not refute the findings of the Washington Free Beacon that, overall, men are paid more than women on Durbin’s staff. It merely provides examples that for various positions on Durbin’s staff, men and women are paid equally or in some cases women are paid more.

The Americas PAC press release is full of links, including audio of its challenged radio ad. A copy of the letter sent by Durbin’s lawyers to radio stations threatening their FCC broadcasting licenses is here.

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