Dec
19
2013

Are you politically ambitious, and a minority? The GOP pays better.

Much better.

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.

(H/T: The Washington Free Beacon) I’ve taken the liberty of reproducing the New Organizing Institute’s numbers in this regard, because for some reason they didn’t want to put the following information into an easily-searchable form:

Ethnicity GOP % of White Dem % of White % of GOP
Asian  $1,409 93%  $1,073 94% 76%
Black  $1,317 87%  $   795 69% 60%
White  $1,510 100%  $1,145 100% 76%
Hispanic  $1,356 90%  $   778 68% 57%

…likewise the gender breakdown:

Gender GOP % of Male Dem % of Male % of GOP
Male  $1,448 96%  $   978 94% 68%
Female  $1,513 100%  $1,037 100% 69%

Not to put too fine a point on it: Democrats pay their staffers peanuts, and pay their minority staffers even worse. Contrariwise, while I will be the first to concede that the GOP has a noteworthy gender gap in its hiring and a severe ethnicity gap, I will also note that said gap does not translate to salaries*.

A few caveats: the raw data is remarkably hard to get – well, ‘remarkably’ unless you remember that political employers regularly exempt themselves from the same transparency and disclosure laws that the rest of us operate under – and the survey makes a bunch of sweeping assumptions (an artifact of the previous caveat).  I wouldn’t recommend using these results in a lawsuit, in other words.  But as a rule of thumb… seriously, the GOP simply just puts a more, ah, concrete value on diversity than the Democratic party does. One that translates into just a bit more in the way of economic security.

Moe Lane

*Sure, you can make the argument that staffers doing equivalent jobs should get equivalent pay.  That is, “you” can make the argument if you’re not a Democrat.  If you are a Democrat, I will politely invite you to go fix your own party’s problems first before you presume to lecture my party for paying our staffers somewhere around 40% more than yours.

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