Tea Party Patriots Ordinary citizens reclaiming America's founding principles.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Paycheck Fairness Act: A Democrat Election Year Distraction

As expected, the Democrats will do, use, or say anything in attempts to turn the argument away from President Obama's 4 yrs of failure and the Democrat-led U.S. Senate failure to pass a budget in over 3 yrs.

Floating like a hot air balloon of hypocrisy to hide their own "Democrat War on Women", the Democrats, using the Paycheck Fairness Act, are out thumping their chest on equal pay for women - even though they pay their own female staff less than their male staff...

From the Republican Policy Committee -
For almost 50 years, workers have been protected against sex-based pay discrimination through the Equal Pay Act of 1963 (EPA) and Title VII of Civil Rights Act of 1964, which was recently amended through the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 (Pub.L. 111-2). Despite these laws, Democrats are pushing a new political vote -- the Paycheck Fairness Act (S. 3220). They expect to schedule a floor vote next month.
The bill was last brought before the Senate for a vote in November 2010, when the Senate failed to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed by a vote of 58-41. Senator Nelson (NE) joined Republican Senators in opposing cloture.
The Paycheck Fairness Act is another election year distraction that will harm job creators and will not put Americans back to work.

Sex-Based Pay Discrimination is Illegal

Enforcement and litigation statistics from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) show that while sex-based discrimination unfortunately still occasionally occurs in the workplace, both the EPA and Title VII already provide ways for those who are discriminated against to file successful complaints and access financial remedies.
In fiscal year 2011, there were 32,789 claims of sex-based discrimination resolved under Title VII.
• The EEOC determined that there was no evidence of discrimination in 63 percent of those cases -- the highest percentage of claims without reasonable cause in 15 years.
• Of the 19.5 percent of meritorious allegations, only 2.8 percent were unsuccessfully resolved.
• Workers received more than $150 million through successfully resolved Title VII and EPA discrimination claims last year, the largest amount awarded in 15 years.

Given that the current system is working, it appears Democrats simply want to make it easier for employees to file discrimination charges against employers regardless of whether there is evidence to support those claims.

The Pay Disparity Fallacy

2009 report commissioned by the Department of Labor found the wage gap exists because of individual choices, not because of discrimination in the workplace. In fact, women between 22 and 30 often earn more than their male peers. However, as men and women balance their work, personal, and family lives differently, the report found that women tend to prefer non-wage compensation -- such as health insurance and working fewer hours -- to greater financial compensation.
The White House’s 2011 report “Women in America: Indicators of Social and Economic Well-Being” supported this idea, as married men spent more time at work (8.8 hours) than married women did (7.6 hours). It is not unreasonable to think that someone who spends more time working earns more money. So, while there may be a “gender-hours gap,” that does not mean there is a gender-wage gap or employer discrimination; in fact, it is likely a conscious decision made by each individual.

The Impact on Job Creators

To address alleged discrimination, the Paycheck Fairness Act amends the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 by creating a new EPA standard for acceptable salary differences between male and female employees. Under the new language, the differences must not only be “job-related,” but also “consistent with business necessity,” although what constitutes “necessity” is open for a jury or court to decide. Additionally, if employers decide to say that the difference is consistent with business necessity, they would still have to prove they could not implement an alternative that would produce the same business outcome without creating a difference in salaries.
The practical application means that, under the Paycheck Fairness Act, if a male employee were the lead on a project and his manager wanted to give him a bonus for completing that project, the manager would not be able to do so. Or if a male employee notified his manager that he had a job offer that included a higher salary, the manager would not be able to make a counter-offer that included a salary increase, because the pay discrepancy could expose the employer to discrimination claims.
While creating an environment where employers can no longer reward employees with a salary increase or bonus would hurt both employees and employers, other aspects of the bill would have an even more adverse effect on the economy.
• Under current law, the EPA requires that workers give written consent to join a class action lawsuit. The Paycheck Fairness Act would change that by automatically including all employees in the class, which would likely result in an increase of class action lawsuits being filed, make it easier to obtain class certification, and increase the size of the class, regardless of whether the suit has any merit.
• Under current law, the EPA prevents successful claimants from receiving compensatory or punitive damages while allowing them to earn back-pay damages. Additionally, while limited compensatory or punitive damages can be awarded under Title VII to claims where there was intentional discrimination, there is a cap on those damages at $300,000. The Paycheck Fairness Act would allow unlimited compensatory and punitive damages under the EPA -- even if the discrimination was found to be unintentional.
According to the “The Second Annual State of Women-Owned Businesses Report,” there are more than 8.3 million women-owned businesses in America, a number that has increase by 54 percent over the last 15 years and continues to increase at one and half times the national average. These businesses generate nearly $1.3 trillion in revenues and employ 7.7 million people. Even these small, women-owned businesses would be subject to the Paycheck Fairness Act’s sweeping changes and the increased possibility of expensive, frivolous lawsuits.
The Paycheck Fairness Act would apply to almost every business in America. By making it difficult for employers to defeat frivolous lawsuits, fostering larger class action cases, and creating an unprecedented level of remedies regardless of the intent to discriminate, the real winner with the passage of the Democrats’ bill would be trial lawyers. The increased liability that job creators would face could have a chilling effect on wage growth and hiring at a time when business should be encouraged to increase both.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Senator Rob Portman is "Lost" on LOST

Below you will find that Senator Jim Inhofe has submitted a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in opposition to the United Nations Conventions on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), also known as the Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST).

In our first contact with Ohio Senator Rob Portman, we were informed Senator Portman was against LOST.  When contacting Portman's office the following day to ask him to sign onto in support of Senator Inhofe's below letter - the subsequent response from his office - epitomizes the response of an elected elite legislator that needs to be replaced in his next election.

Again, as he did in supporting Richard Cordray's appointment as Consumer Czar, Portman takes a spineless, fence-sitting stance claiming he still has "issues & concerns" with LOST, is still researching it, has not yet taken a position, and refused to sign onto Inhofe's below letter against LOST....

The Honorable Harry Reid
Majority Leader
United States Senate
Washington, D.C. 20510

Dear Mr. Leader,

We understand that Chairman Kerry has renewed his efforts to pursue Senate ratification of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.  We are writing to let you know that we believe this Convention reflects political, economic, and ideological assumptions which are inconsistent with American values and sovereignty.

By its current terms, the Law of the Sea Convention encompasses economic and technology interests in the deep sea, redistribution of wealth from developed to undeveloped nations, freedom of navigation in the deep sea and exclusive economic zones which may impact maritime security and environmental regulation over virtually all sources of pollution.

To affect the treaty’s broad regime of governance, we are particularly concerned that United States sovereignty could be subjugated in many areas to a supranational government that is chartered by the United Nations under the 1982 Convention.

Further, we are troubled that compulsory dispute resolution could pertain to public and private activities including law enforcement, maritime security, business operations, and nonmilitary activities performed aboard military vessels.

If this treaty comes to the floor, we will oppose its ratification.

Jon Kyl                          Jim Inhofe       

Roy Blunt                       Pat Roberts
David Vitter                  Ron Johnson
John Cornyn                 Jim DeMint
Tom Coburn                 John Boozman
Rand Paul                     Jim Risch
Mike Lee                       Jeff Sessions
Mike Crapo                   Orrin Hatch
John Barrasso              Richard Shelby
John Thune                    Richard Burr
Saxby Chambliss         Dan Coats
John Hoeven                 Roger Wicker
Jerry Moran                   Marco Rubio

Please contact Senator Portman's office to let him know that he once again let the voters of Ohio down.  And, that since he appears to be "lost" on LOST, if he wants to be reelected as a U.S. Senator from Ohio again - he better quickly find his way!

Senator Rob Portman 

Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/robportman
Email: http://portman.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact-form  

D.C. Office Ph#: (202)224-3353
Cincinnati Office Ph#: (513)684-3265
Toledo Office Ph#: (419)259-3895
Columbus Office Ph#: (800)205-6446 (OHIO)

Stop the Plastic Bag Tax in Cuyahoga County & City of Cleveland

Working to collaborate and impose their Nanny-State, Enviro-Goon beliefs on us,  Cuyahoga County Councilwoman Sunny Simon & City of Cleveland Councilman Matt Zone are teaming up in attempts to create a plastic bag tax at the City and County level.  

From the PD -- 

Cleveland and Cuyahoga County want to work together to get rid of plastic grocery bags rather than fight over who has the power to restrict them.
City Councilman Matt Zone and County Councilwoman Sunny Simon -- along with the county health department, solid waste district and community activists -- will meet Friday to start hammering out how, exactly, to reach that goal.

Zone has considered a city-wide ban. Simon said in February she wanted to propose a countywide 5-cent tax for each bag provided by restaurants and stores. The stores would collect the fee along with sales tax, and the money could pay for education or environmental clean up.

Simon's proposal raised questions about whether the 17-month old county council, the product of a government reform movement, has the power to pass laws that apply inside the borders of the county's cities.

"I'm not going to do anything that's going to create unrest and litigation," Simon said. "I want to work collaboratively with cities and find common ground to implement. . . a bag ordinance that's hopefully going to satisfy the residents and the businesses in the county."

A self-described passionate defender of the environment, it is simple, Simon is willing to stretch the limits of her perceived power to push her progressive agenda.

While Simon says she doesn't want to create unrest and litigation, with Ohio being a "Home Rule" state, she is clearly testing the waters to see how much authority the new county council has in mandating on the political subdivisions within its' boundaries in the form of regulation and increased taxing powers.

Quoted in an earlier PD article on the proposed plastic bag tax, Sunny delightfully stated....
"I really want to do the research and be careful," she said. "This is something that's going to be testing the waters. With this new government and the charter, how far can we go to impact residents' lives?"
The convenient and cozy county/city collaboration on the proposed plastic bag tax is more than just a plastic bag tax.

This is a step closer to big government regionalism through Agenda 21 type sustainability programs. Furthermore, this sets a bad precedent by creating an avenue for Cuyahoga County Council to opening the start taxing anything deemed unsafe for the environment. Or even more....

- Take Action Now - 

First contact Cuyahoga County Councilwoman Sunny Simon and City of Cleveland Councilman Matt Zone to voice your opposition to their proposed plastic bag tax.

We then need to reinforce the message by contacting Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson and Cleveland Council President Martin Sweeney at the city level.  At the county level, please voice your opposition to County Executive Ed Fitzgerald and County Council President Ellen Connally.

Contact Info

Cuyahoga County Council

County Council VP Sunny Simon
Office: (216) 698-2035
Fax: (216) 698-2040
Email: ssimon@cuyahogacounty.us

County Council President Ellen Connally
Office: (216) 698-2023
Fax: (216) 698-2040
Email: ceconnally@cuyahogacounty.us

County Executive Ed Fitzgerald
Office: (216-443-7178
Email: Click Here 

To find your Cuyahoga County Council Member, click here.

City of Cleveland Council

Councilman Matt Zone
Council Office: (216)-664-4235
Ward Office: (216)939-1717
Email: council15@clevelandcitycouncil.org

Council President Martin Sweeney
Office: (216)664-2942
Fax: (216)664-3837
Email: council18@clevelandcitycouncil.org

Mayor Frank Jackson
Office: (216)664-3990
Email: Click Here

To write a letter to the Editor of the Plain Dealer opposing the plastic bag tax, submit online form at  www.cleveland.com/plaindealer/lettertoeditor.ssf or email toletters@plaind.com.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Sustainable Development Funding in Ohio Budget

Marianne at the Mansfield Tea Party has been closely monitoring developments in northern Ohio that extend the tentacles of Agenda 21 into our region. Now we have an opportunity to slow down or stop these encroachments on our freedom. Here’s Marianne’s Alert:

Dear Fellow Ohioans,

As explained in previous newsletters, the Greater Ohio Policy Center, an affiliate of the national organization Smart Growth America, is an Agenda 21 organization funded by extreme environmental advocacy and other Agenda 21 based groups.

The Greater Ohio Policy Center is pushing for the inclusion of funding for the Sustainable Communities Initiative in the fiscal 2013 Ohio budget!

We cannot let this happen! Take Action!

Call your Senators and Representatives and tell them we cannot have our tax dollars spent through these programs! The purpose of these programs is the redistribution of wealth, promoting public transportation (light rail), water use restriction, and what they consider to be "equitable" housing, which is why HUD is involved. Click Here to read more about the Greater Ohio Policy Center's agenda. This link clearly supports the claims made in the previous paragraph regarding their purpose. Contact Information: State Senators State Representatives

Our Representatives and Senators must be educated on the agenda of these programs. Many are ignorant of the existence of Agenda 21, and it’s our job to make sure they see the light.

Thanks for all you do!


Late last week, The Hill reported that

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and a half dozen other senators have proposed legislation setting a uniform national standard for the treatment of egg-laying hens, which would ensure egg producers aren't blocked from selling across state lines due to differing state standards. . . .

Feinstein said her bill, S. 3239, would codify an agreement between the United Egg Producers and the Humane Society on how egg-laying hens should be treated and how eggs should be labeled. . . .

The bill is co-sponsored by Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Scott Brown (R-Mass.), Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), David Vitter (R-La.) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.).

With no budget passed in over three years, you’d think these Senators would have better things to do than stick their noses into the egg business. But it’s probably worse than that.

It's an expansion of the Food Police (remember the Food Safety Act of 2010)? And if S. 3239 becomes law, it could be used as a precedent to further the Progressive interpretation of the Commerce Clause. Co-sponsor Sen. Scott Brown is up for re-election. His office/fax number

Phone: (617) 565-3170 / Fax: (617) 723-7325

Friday, May 25, 2012

President Obama & the Democrat's "War on Women"

Holy Hypocrites Batman.... it look's like President Obama and the Democrat's think women are of a lesser value than men!
From the Washington Free Beacon -- (emphasis added)
A group of Democratic female senators on Wednesday declared war on the so-called “gender pay gap,” urging their colleagues to pass the aptly named Paycheck Fairness Act when Congress returns from recess next month. However, a substantial gender pay gap exists in their own offices, a Washington Free Beacon analysis of Senate salary data reveals.

Of the five senators who participated in Wednesday’s press conference—Barbara Mikulski (D., Md.), Patty Murray (D., Wash.), Debbie Stabenow (D., Mich.), Dianne Feinstein (D., Calif.) and Barbara Boxer (D., Calif.)—three pay their female staff members significantly less than male staffers.

Murray, who has repeatedly accused Republicans of waging a “war a women,” is one of the worst offenders. Female members of Murray’s staff made about $21,000 less per year than male staffers in 2011, a difference of 35.2 percent.

That is well above the 23 percent gap that Democrats claim exists between male and female workers nationwide. The figure is based on a 2010 U.S. Census Bureau report, and is technically accurate. However, as CNN’s Lisa Sylvester has reported, when factors such as area of employment, hours of work, and time in the workplace are taken into account, the gap shrinks to about 5 percent.

A significant “gender gap” exists in Feinstein’s office, where women also made about $21,000 less than men in 2011, but the percentage difference—41 percent—was even higher than Murray’s.

Boxer’s female staffers made about $5,000 less, a difference of 7.3 percent.

The Free Beacon used publicly available salary data from the transparency website Legistorm to calculate the figures, and considered only current full-time staff members who were employed for the entirety of fiscal year 2011.

The employee gender pay gap among Senate Democrats was not limited to Murray, Boxer, and Feinstein. Of the 50 members of the Senate Democratic caucus examined in the analysis, 37 senators paid their female staffers less than male staffers.

Women working for Senate Democrats in 2011 pulled in an average salary of $60,877. Men made about $6,500 more.

While the gap is significant, it is slightly smaller than that of the White House, which pays men about $10,000, or 13 percent, more on average, according to a previousFree Beacon analysis. (Read more here....)
UPDATE 5/26: Townhall reports that
The Department of Justice Civil Rights Division is forcing female students at the University of Arkansas to allow men into their restrooms. Why? A transgendered 38-year-old man named "Jennifer" filed a complaint claiming a university policy that requires men to use male designated restrooms and for women to use female designated restrooms is discrimminatory. Of course, the Justice Department took his/her (?) side, rather than protecting the safety of female students.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Stop the Law of the Sea Treaty

This just in from Mansfield Tea Party Patriots:

In 1982, President Ronald Reagan refused to sign a treaty known as "Law of the Sea" (LOST), a UN convention that would raid America's treasury for billions of dollars, then redistribute that wealth to the rest of the world by an international bureaucracy headquartered in Kingston, Jamaica.

The Obama administration has revived this treaty and this week, possibly tomorrow [Weds., May 23], Senator John Kerry will be holding hearings to discuss the "benefits" and support for ratification of this treaty.

This treaty is yet another tool being used to implement the UN's Agenda 21 through the redistribution of wealth, our wealth, and it must be stopped!

Click Here to Read an Excellent Article from Heritage regarding the dangers of this treaty.

!Take Action!

Contact Senators Portman and Brown. Don't forget to remind Senator Brown that this is an election year, and if he votes to ratify LOST, he'll be lost come November.

Senator Sherrod Brown

Email: http://brown.senate.gov/contact/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/sensherrodbrown

Cleveland Office PH: (216) 522-7272

Cleveland Office Fax: (216) 522-2239

D.C. Office PH: (202) 224-2315

D.C. Office Fax: (202)228-6321

Senator Rob Portman

Email: http://portman.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact-form

Website: http://portman.senate.gov/public/

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/robportman

Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/robportman

D.C. Office Ph#: (202) 224-3353

Cleveland Office Ph#: (216) 522-7095

Cincinnati Office Ph#: (513) 684-3265

Toledo Office Ph#: (419) 259-3895

Columbus Office Ph#: (614) 469-6774 / Toll-Free: 1-800-205-6446

Read more about this Treaty here (includes link to the text of the Treaty.)

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Democrat Controlled U.S. Senate goes 0-5 on Passing a Budget

In recent headlines there has been much coverage on President Obama getting another slap down by his fellow Democrats in the Senate when, once again, they ALL voted against (0-99) a budget resolution based on Obama's failed 2013 budget blue print.

Not wanting to ruin their astonishing run of not passing a budget in over 3 years (1,117 Days) or tarnish their reputation of being a do-nothing, Democrat controlled Senate,  Senate Leader Harry Reid, joined by the establishment elite RINO's, also failed to pass four other budget measures.  The propagandist MSM does not appear to be pointing this out.

Other budget measures that were rejected by the Senate are;

The Senators from Ohio -Senator Sherrod "Sluggo" Brown (D), in cheap attempts to distance himself from his last 4 yrs of failure and still refusing to do the job he was elected to do, joined with fellow Democrats in voting against Obama's budget and the above alternative measures.

Senator Rob "The RINO" Portman (R?), joining his fellow Democrats voted against the Senator Rand Paul and Senator Mike Lee's budget proposals and voted in favor of the Rep. Paul  Ryan and Senator Pat Toomey budget proposals.

We will deal with Senator Sluggo in this general election by educating voters on his failures and forcing him to run on his record.

As for Portman.... while some have the mindless thought he is VP material for Romney -- many Tea Party groups in Ohio will be looking to give him a one way ticket to Lugarville in his next primary.

Below is contact info for Brown & Portman....

Senator Sherrod Brown

Email: http://brown.senate.gov/contact/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/sensherrodbrown 

Cleveland Office PH: (216) 522-7272
Cleveland Office Fax: (216) 522-2239
D.C. Office PH: (202) 224-2315
D.C. Office Fax: (202)228-6321

Senator Rob Portman

Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/robportman
Email: http://portman.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact-form 

D.C. Office Ph#: (202)224-3353
Cleveland Office Ph#: (216)522-7095
Cincinnati Office Ph#: (513)684-3265
Toledo Office Ph#: (419)259-3895
Columbus Office Ph#: (614)469-6774 / 1-800-205-6446 (OHIO) 

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Meeting on Fracking May 21 (Monday) at Lakeland Community College

Rep. Young to Host Public Meeting on Fracking

COLUMBUS—State Representative Ron Young (R-Painesville) has invited the Ohio Department of Natural Resources to conduct a science-based forum dealing with the impact of hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” on Ohio’s economy, environment and natural resources. The forum will take place on Monday, May 21st and will begin at 6 p.m. at Lakeland Community College in room T129.

“Many residents of the 63rd House District are interested in learning more about fracking, and we hope to address these interests by using this event to speak with those individuals directly, hear their thoughts and answer their questions,” said Rep. Young.

The representatives from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources will be answering questions from the attendees, which will be submitted to a moderator at the beginning of the forum. Rep. Young encourages anyone who has an interest in fracking to attend this event or to contact his office at (614) 644-6074 for more information

For more information, please contact Rachael Carl in Rep. Young’s office at (614) 644-6074

Map here. Note: Free campus parking. [h/t Diane Pierce]

17 Senators Voted to "Save the American Dream"

From Heritage Action for America --  (from 5/18/12)

Last night, the Senate voted on five different budgets, including Senator Mike Lee’s (R-UT) Budget (S.Con.Res.44), a plan based off of The Heritage Foundation’s “Saving the American Dream.”

The Heritage Foundation analyzed the budget dynamics:

“Compare the President’s proposal — and Reid’s total lack of a proposal — with the four plans offered by conservatives in Congress, chief among them being Senator Mike Lee’s (R-UT) budget, which mirrors the bold and thorough reforms The Heritage Foundation first proposed in its Saving the American Dream plan. That includes limiting the size of the federal government, reforming entitlement programs, and simplifying the federal tax code in an effort to restore our nation’s economic prosperity and ensure that future generations are not saddled with today’s debt.”

Although we cannot reverse decades of mismanagement overnight, yesterday’s vote creates a solid foundation. It is now clear that there are good ideas out there on how to fix our country; unfortunately, none of them come from our President Obama and his partisan allies in the Senate. The vote results are below, along with a list of the Republicans who voted correctly.

The Lee Budget: Rejected by a vote of 17-82
Heritage Action: YES

Republicans Voting Correctly:
Sen. John Barrasso (WY)

Sen. Dan Coats (IN)
Sen. Tom Coburn (OK)
Sen. Mike Crapo (ID)
Sen. Jim DeMint (SC)
Sen. Mike Enzi (WY)
Sen. Charles Grassley (IA)
Sen. Orrin Hatch (UT)
Sen. James Inhofe (OK)
Sen. Ron Johnson (WI)
Sen. Mike Lee (UT)
Sen. Jerry Moran (KS)
Sen. Rand Paul (KY)
Sen. James Risch (ID)
Sen. Jeff Sessions (AL)
Sen. John Thune (SD)
Sen. David Vitter (LA)