Days after Senate Republicans unanimously blocked a vote on the Paycheck Fairness Act, Phyllis Schlafly, founder of "pro-family" organization Eagle Forum, claimed that providing women with equal pay for equal work would deter their chances of finding a “suitable mate” in a Christian Post op-ed published Tuesday.
Since a woman prefers to marry a man who makes more money than she does, Schlafly argued, decreasing the gender pay gap would leave women unable to secure a husband.
Schlafly, a longtime opponent of the Equal Rights Amendment, wrote:
Another fact is the influence of hypergamy, which means that women typically choose a mate (husband or boyfriend) who earns more than she does. Men don't have the same preference for a higher-earning mate.
While women prefer to HAVE a higher-earning partner, men generally prefer to BE the higher-earning partner in a relationship. This simple but profound difference between the sexes has powerful consequences for the so-called pay gap.
Suppose the pay gap between men and women were magically eliminated. If that happened, simple arithmetic suggests that half of women would be unable to find what they regard as a suitable mate.
The conservative activist also noted that women do not deserve equal pay because they "work fewer hours per day, per week, per year” and “place a much higher value on pleasant working conditions: a clean, comfortable, air-conditioned office with congenial co-workers.”
Schlafly concluded that the best way to empower women "is to improve job prospects for the men in their lives, even if that means increasing the so-called pay gap."
Earlier this month, Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) defended Republicans’ opposition to equal pay legislation, insisting the GOP has long "led the fight for women's equality." Previously, she voted against the 2009 Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.
“I find this war on women rhetoric almost silly,” Blackburn said on CBS' "Face the Nation" on Sunday. “It is Republicans that have led the fight for women’s equality. Go back through history -- and look at who was the first woman to vote, to get elected to office, to go to Congress, four out of five governors.”