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The Truth About Lilly Ledbetter

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The Truth About Lilly Ledbetter

In her April 13 op-ed column, “A political stunt by Democrats,” Ruth Marcus wrote that a woman who lost a pay-discrimination case in the Supreme Court, Lilly Ledbetter, “did not know she was being paid less than male counterparts; by the time she realized and filed suit, according to the Supreme Court, the statute of limitations was up.”
But the Supreme Court’s 2007 decision in Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. indicated that she did know. In footnote 10 of its ruling, the court pointed out that Ledbetter had not even claimed in court that she did not discover the discrimination until the deadline for suing had passed. As it explained, “We have previously declined to address whether Title VII suits are amenable to a discovery rule. . . . Because Ledbetter does not argue that such a rule would change the outcome in her case, we have no occasion to address this issue.”   
In reality, Ledbetter knew for years that she was being paid less, as she made clear in her deposition. When she was asked, “So you knew in 1992 that you were being paid less than your peers?” she answered, “Yes, sir.”