The White House on Monday hit back at suggestions that female employees at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue earn less than their male counterparts, as President Obama readies two executive orders intended to close the wage gap between men and women.
President Obama's top spokesman, Jay Carney, was asked about an American Enterprise Institute study showing that female White House staffers earned 88 cents for every dollar received by men.
“That is not 100 [percent], but it’s better than the national average,” Carney said, insisting that women nationwide earned 77 cents for every $1 paid to male workers.
“When you look at the aggregate, you’re averaging all salaries together … which may or may not be filled with more women than men,” Carney added of the analysis of White House pay.
However, conservatives have accused the White House of spreading a false “War on Women” narrative against Republicans, saying that Obama is hypocritical given the overall pay gap for his own staffers.
Carney countered that men and women in senior positions earn the same salary regardless of gender.
“Men and women in equivalent roles here earn equivalent salaries,” he said.
Obama on Tuesday will issue executive orders that would prevent federal contractors from discriminating against employees for discussing their wages and require the Labor Department to organize salary information based on race and sex.