FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Sept. 15, 2014
CONTACT: Alex Roth, 619-228-3253

On Monday Rep. Scott Peters called for immediate action on Congressional bills that would guarantee women equal pay for equal work and reverse the impacts of the Supreme Court’s anti-woman Hobby Lobby ruling. He also announced that he has signed an amicus brief to the Supreme Court in defense of the rights of pregnant workers.

Peters also demanded that Carl DeMaio 1) renounce his support for a plan that would make birth control less affordable for women; 2) complete the Planned Parenthood candidate questionnaire so voters know where DeMaio stands on women’s reproductive rights; and 3) join in Peters’ call to Speaker Boehner to allow a vote on the Paycheck Fairness Act before Congress adjourns this week.

“Carl DeMaio wants to make it harder for women to afford birth control, harder for them to collect overtime pay, and he’s refused to support the Paycheck Fairness Act,” Peters said. “He has no history of standing up for women and he’s backed and funded by anti-women Tea Party extremists in Congress who he’s repeatedly refused to stand up to when it comes to women’s rights.”

Peters made the announcements at a “Women Stand With Scott” press conference where he was joined by more than 40 women, including leaders from: Planned Parenthood Action Fund National PAC; NARAL Pro-Choice America; current and former women elected officials, his wife of 27 years, Lynn, and Irene McCormack Jackson, who was making only her second media appearance since settling a sexual harassment lawsuit with former Mayor Bob Filner. Jackson announced that she is endorsing Peters.

Peters is the only candidate in the CA-52 race endorsed by Planned Parenthood, who recently noted that DeMaio “has never given us a straight answer.” In a recent memo, Planned Parenthood Action Fund of the Pacific Southwest wrote:

“The non-partisan Action Fund asked DeMaio on numerous occasions where he stands on Planned Parenthood services, like cervical cancer screenings, breast health, STD testing and treatment, and contraception.

DeMaio had nothing to say when he was running for City Council. He did not respond to inquiries when he was running for mayor. And now, as he attempts to unseat Congress member Scott Peters, DeMaio still refuses to engage in a dialogue about women’s health with Planned Parenthood.”

At Monday’s press conference, Peters noted the differences between him and DeMaio on several important women’s rights issues:

Birth Control

Peters immediately condemned the Supreme Court’s recent Hobby Lobby ruling, which allows corporations to deny women health coverage for birth control. And today Peters called on Speaker John Boehner to allow an immediate vote on the Protect Women’s Health from Corporate Interference Act, which would reverse the impact of the Hobby Lobby ruling.

DeMaio has refused to condemn the Hobby Lobby ruling. And last week DeMaio announced his support for over-the-counter access to birth control without providing any provision for continuing insurance coverage. Under DeMaio’s plan, more than 48 million American women would no longer be eligible for no-copay birth control.

Equal Pay

Peters has repeatedly called on Speaker Boehner to allow an immediate vote on the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would strengthen existing law when it comes to making sure women get equal pay for equal work. Peters sent a letter to the Speaker today asking that he call for a vote before the House adjourns this week.

In sharp contrast, DeMaio has refused to take a position on the Paycheck Fairness Act. And last week DeMaio voiced support for the Working Families Flexibility Act, a bill with a nice title but devastating consequences for working women because it would allow companies to avoid paying overtime to employees.

Protections for Pregnant Workers

Peters also announced today that last week he signed an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to recognize that pregnant workers are entitled to reasonable accommodations such as light duty, so expectant mothers are not forced out of their jobs. Peters joined more than 100 members of Congress last week in filing the brief to the Supreme Court in the case of Young v UPS, which argues that UPS acted in violation of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act when it refused to allow Ms. Young routine modifications provided to other workers similarly unable to work because of a disability.

Peters is also a co-sponsor of the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act of 2013.