Future Supreme Court Justices.
Yes, there are obviously MANY other good reasons to vote for the next President.
But today’s 5-4 ruling (yes, along ideological lines) is only more proof that women’s rights will slowly slip away if we don’t have a Democrat appointing Justices for the next Supreme Court seats that come open.
Why do I say that today?
Because today, the Supreme Court limited to ability of employees to sue their employers for discrimination.
That means women who have been paid less than their male counterparts over the course of their careers may not be able to sue for sex discrimination if they don’t discover the pay disparities early in their tenure. If it’s been hidden and you haven’t had a reason to take a poll about who’s getting paid what, you’re SOL.
Lilly Ledbetter sued her employer, Goodyear, claiming that she had been discriminated against for 19 years because she had been paid significantly less than other male employees who were less experienced and less senior than her. The trial court initially agreed, and awarded her $3.8 million.
The upshot after years of legal wrangling was the decision today that Ledbetter was too late in suing and that if employees were allowed to sue under these circumstances that employers would find it too difficult to defend such claims “arising from employment decisions that are long past.”
Those poor, large corporations.
Essentially businesses are now going to be rewarded for paying their long-time, loyal women employees less than their less experienced male counterparts. The longer employers can keep it a secret that they’re paying the women less, the more likely it will be that there will be no repercussions.
The Supreme Court as it is currently composed already has weighed-in on abortion in a way that has opened the door to chipping away at women’s privacy rights. Now, it’s chipped away at our right to challenge being paid less because of our gender.
Not surprisingly, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote the wonderful dissent in this discrimination case, which explains quite directly why this decision is wrong. But if you’ve only got four votes, it doesn’t matter how good your logic or legal reasoning is.
Justice Ginsburg can’t do it alone and the four in the minorty are no spring chickens. I pray for frequently for the good health of the “liberal” justices and hope they can hang on until January of 2009.
But the only sure way we can think about getting the one additional vote we need to keep our rights from slipping away is to cast our votes for the Presidential candidate we think will do that best.