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Equal Pay Day

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

(Ms. PINGREE of Maine asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute and to revise and extend her remarks.)

Ms. PINGREE of Maine. Mr. Speaker, this week we marked Equal Pay Day, a day when we recognize the unequal pay of women in this country. Today, women still only make 77 cents to every dollar earned by men. But this disparity is not a women's issue. It's a family issue.

There are just as many women as there are men in the workforce now, and women are the breadwinner or co-breadwinner in about two-thirds of all American families. That is why all of us, men and women alike, have such a big stake in eliminating this gap.

I was proud that my first speech as a freshman in this body was in support of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and when that legislation became the first bill that President Obama signed after taking office. I was proud when Maine had Lilly Ledbetter herself to visit our State last month. And I am proud of the fact that Maine has passed a comparable worth law and made great strides towards ending pay discrimination in our own State.

But for all we have to be proud of, we have so much more to do because when women are paid less, everybody suffers.

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