Congressional Women Staffers Paid Less Than Men

By Andrew Lu on July 17, 2012 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Female Congressional staffers earn significantly less pay than their male counterparts, a new National Journal survey reveals.

The House Republican female staffers had it worst, making only 84 cents for every dollar their male colleagues made, reports Politico. Senate Republicans fared slightly better making 86 cents to every dollar a male counterpart made. Female House Democrats had it best, though still earning less than their male colleagues at 97 cents to the dollar.

It's ironic to think that it was the Republicans who pushed so hard to strike down the Paycheck Fairness Act last month, which sought to close the gender wage gap.

While a 16-cent gap may seem insignificant when looking at the salary discrepancy on a dollar-to-dollar basis, when annualized, the difference comes out to about $10,000 for House Republican female staffers, reports Politico. Female House Democrats and their three cent gap made $1,400 less over the course of a year. Now, the average working woman in the U.S. makes 77 cents for every dollar a man earns. So, female Congressional staffers still made out better than the average woman in the U.S.

Still, if the salary gap in Congress does not infuriate women on Capitol Hill, one proffered reason for the gap may. A "gender disparity in high-level congressional jobs" can explain the pay difference, says the National Journal survey. Basically, the rationale is made that men make more than woman because they hold the higher-paying leadership positions.

One could draw the conclusion that not only do female Congressional staffers make less salary than their male peers, they also have no way of attaining the higher-power, higher-paying positions in Congress.

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