As Obama Spotlights Gender Gap in Wages, His Own Payroll Draws Scrutiny
The fun continues:
WASHINGTON — President Obama on Tuesday will call attention to what he has said is an “embarrassment” in America: the fact that women make, on average, only 77 cents for every dollar that a man earns.
But critics of the administration are eager to turn the tables and note that Mr. Obama’s White House fares only slightly better. A study released in January showed that female White House staff members make on average 88 cents for every dollar a male staff member earns.
The White House flack was quick to deride the phony '88 cents' statistic:
Jay Carney, the president’s press secretary, said the statistics for White House staff members reflect the fact that women fill more lower-level positions than men. But he said that women and men in the same positions at the White House are paid the same, and that many of the women hold senior positions.
“Men and women in equivalent roles here earn equivalent salaries,” Mr. Carney said. “Some of the most senior positions in the White House are filled by women, including national security adviser, homeland security adviser, White House counsel, communications director, senior adviser, deputy chief of staff.”
He said that the 88-cent statistic was misleading because it aggregates the salaries of White House staff members at all levels, including the lowest levels, where women outnumber men.
I know what you're thinking, but John Boehner's press guy beat us to it:
Brendan Buck, a spokesman for House Speaker John A. Boehner, said the 77-cent statistic that Mr. Obama has often cited was misleading for the same reason, because it aggregates salaries for the American workforce. “The wage gap is real, but the White House does itself a disservice — and embarrasses itself in the process — by grasping for misleading statistics that don’t tell the whole story,” Mr. Buck said.
No kidding. maybe Ezra can devote a column to why partisanship makes Obama stupid.
FWIW, the Times ignored the flaws in the 77 cent argument when they covered this just a ferw weeks back. Truth may have finally gotten its boots on.
AND SPEAKING OF DEFENSIVE... The White House spinners backpedal quicker than a Seahawk cornerback.