Updated 12:45 p.m. | Senate Republicans filibustered a debate on a Democratic pay equity bill backed by President Barack Obama Wednesday.
Sixty votes were needed to allow the bill to be debated on the Senate floor, but Republicans refused to allow the bill to come up for debate after complaining Democrats weren’t allowing votes on their amendments. Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, also broke with his typical party leanings and voted with Republicans against cloture. The vote was 53-44, with Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., joining Republicans as a “no” in order to preserve his right to reconsider the vote.
King explained his vote in a lengthy statement. “This particular bill, in my view, fails to address the real causes that are driving the wage gap,” he said. “In addition, the bill could impose substantial burdens on businesses in justifying pay differentials,” he said, adding that there are better ways, like raising the minimum wage, to address the gap.
No Republican voted with the Democrats. Three Republicans did not vote: Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, John Cornyn of Texas and Ted Cruz of Texas. Full story