Democratic incumbent Sen. Mary Landrieu (La.) said allegations that she pays her female staffers less than men are "bogus," despite public records that show she paid women 82 cents on the dollar compared to men last year.
During the first senate debate on Thursday evening, Landrieu was challenged on her support for the Paycheck Fairness Act by Tea Party candidate Rob Maness because of the pay discrepancy in her own office.
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Maness said that he would like to see the Equal Pay Act enforced, and that during his time in the United States Air Force he was proud that women he served with were paid equally to him.
"I’m proud to have served with them and proud to know that they got the same pay that I got as a man," said Maness. "And I would like to see that happen even in Senator Landrieu's office, where women are paid less than the men are."
Landrieu rebutted that the claims about gender pay discrepancies in her office were "bogus."
"I need to respond," Landrieu said. "The women are not paid less in my office and it’s a bogus claim, and there are all sorts of bogus claims in this campaign."
According to a Washington Free Beacon analysis of Senate records from the 2013 fiscal year, the average male salary in Landrieu’s office was $13,037 higher than the average female salary last year. Women made just 82 cents for each dollar made by men.
Staffers that were not employed for the entire year were excluded from the analysis. Accordingly, Landrieu’s pay gap did not include one of her highest paid employees, Chief of Staff Donald Cravins, who worked part of the year on the Small Business Committee. Cravens still earned $120,504.14 from Landrieu’s Senate office in 2013.
Overall, Landrieu’s male employees earned an average of $71,945.82 in 2013, compared with a $58,907.95 average salary for female employees.