CNN Fact-Checks Rachel Maddow, Alex Castellanos Feud Over Gender Pay Gap: Determines Maddow Righthttp://www.mediaite.com/tv/cnn-fact-che ... dow-right/
On Sunday’s Meet the Press on NBC, CNN contributor Alex Castellanos and MSNBC host Rachel Maddow engaged in a heated debate over the reasons behind gender inequality and salary discrepancies in the work place. On Monday, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer and reporter Lisa Sylvester fact-checked the debate and found that Maddow was on the correct side of their argument.
“The question: Is there an earnings gap between men and women,” asked Sylvester. “And the answer, according to the Census Bureau, is yes.”
Sylvester profiles Lisa Maatz, American Association Of University Women’s director of public policy and government relations, who told CNN that as an adjunct professor she often sees her male counterparts making more than their female colleagues.
“Castellanos makes two points: that men make more because they work more and they go into professions that pay higher salaries,” says Sylvester. “But data directly from the Census Bureau shows there is a pay gap and it’s real.”
CNN reports that the United States Census Bureau found that in 2010, “the earnings of women who worked full time, year-round were 77 percent of that for men working full time, year-round.”
Maatz concedes that, following a regression analysis that takes into account the issues that Castellanos raised on Meet The Press, the gender pay gap does shrink. However, she says there is still a gap and therein lies the problem because it is unexplained.
“We can’t say it’s because [women] work less hours, or they supervise fewer people,” said Maatz.
“So the bottom line, though. If men and women worked the exact same job, do women still only earn 77 cents on the dollar,” asked Blitzer.
“There is definitely a gap,” said Sylvester. “But there are all kinds of other control factors. What college somebody went to. What region of the country. Whether you’re talking about salaried workers or part-time workers. The average full-time workers, the difference in pay is 77 cents on the dollar.”However, Sylvester says that if you control for all factors, the pay gap shrinks to approximately 5 cents more for men than for women. “It is still there, it is still real and the truth is men make more than women,” Sylvester concluded
I watched Castellanos and his Republican woman counterpart - both - try to shoot down Maddow's argument. Unfortunately, the data on this is known. Castellanos was spouting talking points I've discussed in my class on gender many times. It may be true that women sometimes work fewer hours than men, or are more likely to work part-time, blah blah blah ... even when you control for those "factors," the gender pay gap - the very core of the Lily Ledbetter Act Obama signed as one of his first pieces of legislation in 2009 - still exists.
It amazes me the Republicans continue to insist there is no war on women, then deny with a straight face a gender pay gap that has existed for decades.
BTW, the very first bill Congress ever passed on this was the Equal Pay Act of 1963 - 50 years ago. I guess there has been some progress; the pay gap went from 62 cents per man's dollar to 77 cents in 2012 ... I have heard Lily Ledbetter may bring it closer eventually to 82 cents.