In 1998, when Lilly Ledbetter retired as a supervisor from the Goodyear plant in Gadsden, Alabama, she was making $500 less a month than her lowest-paid male counterpart, and $1500 less a month than the highest-paid male supervisor. Ledbetter sued under the Civil Rights Act of 1964, but the Supreme Court denied her claim because by the time Ledbetter filed suit, it had been more than 180 days since the last time a “discriminatory pay-setting act” had occurred. In response to Ledbetter’s case, and as one of his first acts in office, President Barack Obama signed an amendment to the Civil Rights Act so that each receipt of a paycheck “resets” that 180-day statute of limitations. Many women voters took this as a sign that President Obama takes women's issues (including equal pay) seriously, something which Democrats have been careful to stress at this year’s convention. Patt checks in with Lilly Ledbetter to talk politics and the 2012 campaign.
Lilly Ledbetter, women's equality activist.