Friday, January 17, 2020

All But 34 Republicans Cast A Very Dangerous Vote Against Seniors On Wednesday


You would think that passing Bobby Scott's Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act (H.R. 1230) would be easy as pie. And it kind of was. It passed the House Monday 261-155, every single Democrat voting yes-- even the worst of the Blue Dogs and New Dems and 34 Republicans jumping the fence to vote with the Dems-- a relatively very large number of Republicans. Almost all the endangered Republicans-- the ones most likely to be defeated in November and who are desperate for every vote they can corral-- voted yes. A dozen examples:
Don Bacon (R-NE)
Troy Balderson (R-OH)
Mike Bost (R-IL)
Rodney Davis (R-IL)
Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA)
Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-OR)
John Katko (R-NY)
Brian Mast (R-FL)
Michael McCaul (R-TX)
Chris Smith (R-NJ)
Elise Stefanik (R-NY)
Fred Upton (R-MI)
Jeff Van Drew (R-NJ)
So why would so many Republicans cross the aisle and why would so many vote against it. The whole idea of the bill is the amend the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 to "establish an unlawful employment practice when the complaining party demonstrates that age or participation in investigations, proceedings, or litigation under such Act was a motivating factor for any unlawful employment practice, even though other factors also motivated the practice (thereby allowing what are commonly known as 'mixed motive' claims). The bill (1) permits a complaining party to rely on any type or form of admissible evidence, which need only be sufficient for a reasonable trier of fact to find that an unlawful practice occurred; and (2) declares that a complaining party shall not be required to demonstrate that age or retaliation was the sole cause of the employment practice (thereby rejecting the Supreme Court's decision in Gross v. FBL Financial Services, Inc., which requires a complainant to prove that age was the 'but-for' cause for the employer's decision). The bill authorizes a court in a claim in which age discrimination is shown to grant declaratory and injunctive relief, but prohibits a court from awarding damages or issuing an order requiring any admission, reinstatement, hiring, promotion, or payment. The bill applies the same standard of proof to other employment discrimination and retaliation claims, including claims under the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990, and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973."

Sounds sensible? Well, there weren't many Republicans in real reelection battles this year who voted NO. The only ones I could find were extreme right ideologues Steve King (R-IA), Lee Zeldin (R-NY), Ken Calvert (R-CA), Devin Nunes (R-CA), John Carter (R-TX) and anti-union fanatic Greg Gianforte, a crackpot congressman running for the Senate in Montana. I talked with Dary Rezvani, the progressive in this Central Valley race, about Nunes' vote. "We have a responsibility," he said, "to take care of our most vulnerable populations, including our seniors. There are over 140,000 seniors that live in California’s 22nd district and with housing and medical costs only rising, you would think that Nunes would pay attention to the needs of his constituents. He is only concerned with carrying out the agenda of the Trump Administration and unfortunately that leaves our seniors with a representative who votes against them. Votes against protection against discrimination votes against the Senior Protection Act 2010, co-sponsored legislation in 2014 to eradicate the individual mandate, which we know will disproportionately affect seniors utilizing healthcare services. As a millennial running for office, I can see firsthand what happens when government services meant to support our seniors’ fail and it falls to a family safety net. Not all of our seniors have a family to rely on and it is our duty to provide basic government services to protect them and build a plan for long-term care."

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At 7:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll wait to see if any next democrap president will enforce this. They wouldn't enforce bank fraud and torture laws. Corporations don't like to be thusly encumbered. democraps don't like to encumber their corporate donors...

but nobody would notice. so never mind.

At 9:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a senior who was pushed out of a job allegedly for reasons similar to those contained in this bill (which won't even get introduced in the Senate), all such measures are an insult. Having such laws on the books only means that employers will have to spend a little more on lawyers who have worked out how to get around such restrictions on maximizing profits.

At 5:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

FYI - Gianforte is running for Governor of Montana.


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