A Utah politician who sparked outrage with his ludicrous explanation for why employers should not have to pay men and women equally has resigned from his position.
James Green, vice chair of Utah’s Wasatch County GOP, said in a statement to Fox 13 Salt Lake City that there was “no offense intended” with his remarks, and that he “profusely” apologizes “to those who were offended.”
Green incited the rage of equal pay advocates earlier this week in his letter to the editor in the Wasatch Wave, titled “Equal Pay For Women Has Consequences.” In the letter, Green argued against a state senate bill aimed at strengthening equal pay protection.
Specifically, the bill would require employers to develop and disclose “uniform criteria” about how they decide on compensation and would call for the Department of Workforce Services to study pay disparities between men and women in Utah.
In his letter, Green claimed that men need to be paid more so they can support their families and “allow the Mother to remain in the home to raise and nurture the children.” He argued that if businesses have to pay men and women equally, they’ll have to dock the pay of men, meaning that mothers will be “forced” to work outside the home as well.
Responding to public outcry over the letter, Green sent a second letter to Fox 13 on Wednesday in which he apologized — sort of.
“There was no offense intended toward Women, whatsoever,” he wrote. “And yet some took it that way. To those who were offended, I profusely apologize. I sincerely did not mean to do that.” (Read the whole letter here.)
Green also said the main point of his letter was that he does not believe the government should dictate what private establishments do in terms of compensation or hiring practices. He added, “Of course, Women’s contributions in the workplace are just as valuable as any one else’s. I was merely pointing out the historical reasons for pay disparity and the challenges of overcoming that.”
After continuing to receive sharp criticism, however, Green resigned from his position on Friday.
“I didn’t want to hurt the party any further,” he told Fox 13. “They didn’t force me to do it. There was no coercion. I chose to step down.”