Guy Who Argued Against Equal Pay & Paid Leave Working On Women's Issues

by Natasha Guzmán
Win McNamee/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Ivanka Trump is now tackling the issues of paid leave, childcare, and other so-called "women's issues" with the help of Stephen Miller, one of President Trump's senior advisers. Given Miller's past record of dismissing the gender wage gap and arguing against paid maternity leave, his appointment is already raising eyebrows.

News of Miller's changing role came in a Thursday POLITICO report, and The Huffington Post quickly brought attention to the 31-year-old's questionable history regarding women's rights.

One of the clearest pieces of evidence illustrating Miller’s views on at least one of the matters he’ll likely be working on is a 2005 op-ed he published in Duke University’s student newspaper The Chronicle. Titled “Sorry feminists,” Miller’s article manages to argue, in less than 800 words, that “women already have equal rights in this country;" that the wage gap between men and women exists because of the longer hours men work and because of women’s tendency to pursue lower-paying careers; that maternity leave leads to employees getting fired because the "boss [is] losing too much money by paying absent employees;” and that gender roles are actually valid.

Men and women are in many ways the same, but they're also innately and magnificently different. It's these differences that make the opposite sex so wonderful, so compelling, so attractive. The truth is, even in modern-dayAmerica, there is a place for gender roles. I simply wouldn't feel comfortable hiring a full-time male babysitter or driving down the street and seeing a group of women carrying heavy steel pillars to a construction site. I can't stomach the idea of, say, having a wife who worked as a prison guard getting abused and threatened all day long. Feminists would say this outlook makes me a chauvinist. But they'd be wrong. It's not chauvinism. It's chivalry.

Every single argument Miller made has been repeatedly debunked, but what is sure to make his involvement in tackling this issue more interesting is the fact that Ivanka Trump seemingly believes that the wage gap is a legitimate problem. She recently took to Twitter on Equal Pay Day and wrote, "#EqualPayDay is a reminder that women deserve equal pay for equal work. We must work to close the gender pay gap!" The first daughter has also put the promotion of education, entrepreneurship, equal pay, and paid maternity leave for female professionals at the center of her platform.

During her father's presidential campaign, Ivanka asserted that he would fight to close the wage gap and to provide paid parental leave, which she vowed to work with him on. Since Miller's op-ed was written 12 years ago, one can only hope that his views have changed over time.