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Public Statements

Right to Work for Less Act

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Ms. PINGREE of Maine. Madam Speaker, for generations we have fought to improve conditions for working American families: the minimum wage, anti-discrimination rules, and the 40-hour workweek. These changes were all passed by Congress to make it a little bit easier for Americans to make a decent living under decent working conditions.

Now the Republicans want to roll back some of these basic protections, starting with the 40-hour workweek. The bill we are debating this week--which should be called the Right to Work for Less Act--is designed to let employers avoid paying overtime and could force workers to take comp time instead. But the comp time could only be used when it suits the employer.

There is no question we need to improve workplace rules, like equal pay for equal work or guaranteed paid sick leave or a higher minimum wage. But rolling back the clock to do away with the 40-hour workweek is a step backwards, and it is a lousy deal for American workers.

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