If you’re a political campaign worker for the Democrats in this election year, it may or may not be a happy Labor Day.
For a party that offers up a lot of rhetoric about pay equity and whatnot, there appears to be a racial pay gap in salaries for campaign staff, at least according to the New Organizing Institute, which refers to itself as a “community of organizers.”
In a recent study, the NOI determined as follows:
“African American staffers on Democratic federal-level campaigns are paid 70 cents on the dollar compared to their white counterparts; Hispanics are paid 68 cents on the dollar. Women on campaigns are also paid less than men, although at a rate not too far from parity: 95 cents on the dollar. Interestingly, although the proportions of staff are more skewed towards white men on Republican campaigns, the income disparities are more pronounced on Democratic campaigns.”
In an article about these findings, The Daily Beast suggested that campaign workers who want to grow their political careers apparently try to avoid being funneled into a so-called minority outreach specialist job.
With that in mind, one Democrat operative explained, “Most minority staffers get hired in campaigns in field jobs, and field jobs pay less. The problem is: they don’t hire African Americans, Latinos in the parts of the campaigns where they spend the most money. The most money in campaigns is spent in communications, polling and data. In those parts of the campaign, it’s very much mostly white.”
With regard to the NOI study, NewsBusters pointed out that although there are pay issues in both major political parties, “Democrats are known for attempting to bring about ‘equal pay for equal work’ and ‘racial equality,’ which makes the situation on their side of the political aisle all the more egregious — and therefore all the more newsworthy.”
Another study suggests that only two percent of Democrat spending on campaign consultants went to minority-owned businesses.
Earlier this year, the attempt by the White House to make pay equity a signature issue backfired when it turned out that Obama’s male staffers earn higher salaries than their female colleagues. It has been also revealed that several Democrat U.S. Senators have the same pay gap issue in their Capitol Hill offices. The White House has insisted that men and women at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue who do the same or an equivalent job receive equal pay for equal work. That explanation would ironically be met with skepticism by the Obama administration if it came from a private sector business caught in government regulatory crosshairs.
[image via Shutterstock]