Yesterday Roll Call posted an article stating that the House of Representatives has paid out more than $15 million over the last decade to settle harassment cases, though that number also includes discrimination claims. There has been no information released as to exactly why the payments were made or exactly which members of Congress were involved.
The article reports:
Speier’s (Representative Jackie Speier) office clarified Wednesday that the Office of Compliance, which handles workplace and accessibility issues on Capitol Hill, does not provide a breakdown for the type of discrimination payments made.
The OOC’s $15 million figure covered more than 200 payouts made from fiscal years 1997 to 2016 for all claims the office covered, such as racial and religious discrimination cases, discrimination against people with disabilities and sexual harassment, a Speier staffer said.
Why were the taxpayers paying out this money instead of the people involved?
It seems as if sexual harassment has become the issue of the day. I find this a bit disingenuous. In addition to the pass given to Bill Clinton, where was this issue when Ted Kennedy and Chris Dodd were in Congress? There is a danger of a witch hunt here. There is also a danger that because of the political divide in the country right now, the investigation of sexual harassment in Congress will turn into a very ugly political process.