JUST IN: House Republicans Pass Trump-Approved Overtime Bill (DETAILS)


On Wednesday, House Republicans passed a bill that will have a serious effect on Americans whose employers currently give them time-and-a-half pay when they work extra hours.

Now, as a result of this bill, H.R. 1180, private-sector employers are able to give their employees the choice of paid time off instead of time-and-a-half pay.

President Trump’s staff has spoken out in favor of the bill, and his advisers have said that they would recommend he sign it into law.

In a news release issued on Tuesday, the White House praised H.R. 1180, also known as the Working Families Flexibility Act of 2017, saying that it will “extend to private-sector workers a choice that public-sector employees have long enjoyed.”

The Trump administration also touted the bill’s ability to “help American workers balance the competing demands of family and work by giving them flexibility to earn paid time off.”

The bill passed on Wednesday primarily along party lines, according to CNN Money. All House Democrats voted against it, and all but six Republicans voted in its favor.

With the exception of the six who voted against it, Republicans have largely praised H.R. 1180, saying that it will give families more control over their work.

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Washington) said in a press conference on Tuesday morning about the bill:

‘I don’t think there’s anything more powerful than giving them more control over their time so that they can make the best decisions for themselves and their families.’

On the other hand, Democrats have expressed concerns primarily about the bill giving employers more opportunities to exploit employees.

The American Prospect’s Justin Miller explained the problem as follows:

‘If comp time instead of overtime pay is an option, employers could be driven to overwork employees while coercing them to opt in to comp time.’

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) has also spoken out against the bill, calling it a “disgrace.”

Along with Senator Warren, Senator Patty Murray (D-Washington), who is the top Democrat on the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions committee, has condemned the bill, saying it would give more power to big cooperations.

‘This is nothing but a recycled bad bill that would allow big corporations to make an end-run around giving workers the pay they’ve earned.’

Ross Eisenbrey, vice president of the Economic Policy Institute, also said that the bill does not, as Republicans might think, give any news rights to workers. Instead, it gives more rights to employers.

‘Literally, this is a complete and total fraud. [The bill] doesn’t give any new rights to workers that they don’t have now. But it does give new rights to employers, including the right to not pay overtime in the week that it’s worked.’

It’s not surprising that the Trump administration has favored a bill that would benefit employers at the expense of their employees.

H.R. 1180 may have made it through the House, but it might have a harder time passing the Senate. With Republicans holding 52 seats in the Senate, eight Democrats will need to vote in favor of the bill to avoid a filibuster.

Featured image via Win McNamee/Getty Images.