From the New York Times Economix Blog:

The Mama Grizzlies running for office this fall oppose increased government spending, including programs that could help parents balance paid employment with family work.

Perhaps increased economic inequality in the United States means that individuals running for office don’t have a very clear understanding of the problems facing people in different circumstances than their own. In particular, they don’t fully appreciate the difficulties many mothers face holding down difficult jobs while caring for young children.

You might assume that highly paid women suffer a bigger economic penalty than other women when they have a baby because, after all, they have more earnings to lose.

In a startling new look at the “motherhood penalty,” however, two sociologists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Michelle J. Budig and Melissa J. Hodges, show that mothers with lower earnings suffer the biggest percentage loss in hourly wages.

More in the New York Times: Rich Mom, Poor Mom

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