Democrats will try to counter ruling on pay bias

Published May 31, 2007

WASHINGTON - Congressional Democrats said Wednesday they would try to pass legislation to undo a Supreme Court decision that limits the time that workers have to sue their employers for pay discrimination.

"All Americans deserve equal pay for equal work, and it is my hope that Congress can remove the technical hurdles that will prevent individuals from receiving what is rightfully theirs, " said Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., a Democratic presidential candidate.

The Supreme Court voted 5-4 on Tuesday to throw out a Goodyear employee's complaint that she earned thousands of dollars less than her male counterparts.

Under the court's decision, an employee must sue within a 180-day deadline of a decision involving pay if the employee thinks it involves their race, sex, religion or national origin.

The court's five most conservative members said the woman waited too long to complain. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, writing in dissent for the court's four liberal members, urged Congress to amend the law.

"As Justice Ginsburg suggests, the ball has now fallen into Congress' court and we intend to address this ruling, " House Education and Labor Chairman George Miller, D-Calif., said Wednesday.