Jon Kyl "No" Vote for Women Again

Written by:
Jagajeet Chiba
Published on:

First he lashed out at the idea of women getting healthcare coverage for maternity, now Arizona Republican Senator and online gambling antagonist Jon Kyl is at it again.  This time he has voted against a woman's right to sue her employer if she claims sexual abuse from co-workers. 

And he has company in that fellow Arizona Senator, John McCain has voted against such a measure as well.

E.J. Montini of Arizona Central last week asked both of the Senators why they would take such an approach.

To his credit, Senator McCain did respond (via a staffer).

An amendment to the 2010 Defense Appropriations Act was drafted by Minnesota Democratic Senator Al Franken earlier this month that would seek to prohibit the US government from doing business with companies like the giant defense contractor Halliburton if the company prevents employees from taking workplace sexual assault to court.  Montini points out in his piece that a female employee of a Halliburton subsidiary tried to sue the company, claiming she was gang raped by fellow employees while working overseas. The small print in her employment contract stated that any such allegation would have to be resolved by binding arbitration and not in court.

McCain staffer, Brooke Buchanan, explained her boss's vote in an e-mail that reads:

"As the amendment stood, it would deny the Department of Defense (DoD) funds under existing contracts that have the mandatory arbitration clause even if performance under the contract was in all ways satisfactory. In other words, it would force DoD to stop payment on a contract over a clause that was legal at the time and had nothing to do with performance.

"Had Franken aimed his provision at future contracts, then the question would have been whether this is good policy. But as applied to existing contracts, it was a matter of ‘you can't back up from here.'

"Also, where ever possible an environment that encourages arbitration instead of litigation that overburdens the court system is a good thing. Of course, Senator McCain strongly opposes any activity or behavior, including of course sexual harassment, in violation of law."

Jon Kyl on the other hand did not offer any explanation to his voting against such a measure.

Kyl is the man who helped author and push through the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act, attaching the measure to an unrelated Port Security Act in October 2006.

Jagajeet Chiba, Gambling911.com




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