As required by Congress since 1995, the White House delivered its annual payroll report to Congress yesterday listing the title and salary of every White House employee. Here’s a link to the salary report and here’s a White House Fact Sheet that was released ahead of the salary report.
Here are some details of 2021 White House salaries:
1. There are currently 518 paid employees listed in this year’s White House salary report: 304 female staffers and 214 male staffers. As you can see from the salary report, the White House provides employee names, positions, and salaries, but does not provide data on employees’ gender. Based on the names provided, the gender for the majority of employees is obvious based on first names (e.g., Thomas, Matthew, Maureen, Stephanie) and for those names that aren’t obvious (Nelvis, Casey, Machmud, Kelsey, Vy, etc.) I conducted basic Internet research that included Google searches (including news and image searches), Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to determine gender.
2. According to my analysis, 58.9% of White House staff is female and 41.1% male, which means there are 143 female staffers for every 100 males. The White House’s Fact Sheet admits that there is a significant gender imbalance for its staff — “women make up approximately 60% of staff — by reporting that “This surpasses the 50.8% share of the national population who are women per the 2019 U.S. Census and the 47.0% share of women within the labor force as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. It is also the case that across every level of seniority within the White House there are more women than men.” The Biden-Harris Administration then takes credit for having “the most diverse Administration in history.” But isn’t the Biden-Harris administration admitting that it has shown the most gender favoritism and the most gender discrimination in its hiring practices to achieve the greatest “diversity”gender imbalance in history it takes credit for and brags about? According to today’s obsession with “equity,” any unequal statistical outcome in everything including school suspensions, academic achievement, homeownership, STEM positions, etc. are a cause for concern followed by various solutions to achieve forced equality of outcomes by race or gender. But that concern for gender or racial imbalances is highly selective and doesn’t include the fact that men are a significant underrepresented minority (URM) at every level of seniority in the White House. An increase in the underrepresentation of at least one unfavored URM is now apparently something to brag about as greater “diversity” even though it’s really greater uniformity.
3. The White House salaries this year range between a minimum of $48,000 for a variety of regular staff positions including “staff assistant,” “analyst,” and “coordinator” and a maximum of $180,000 (or slightly higher for two females, see below) for 15 women and 9 males, including Jennifer Psaki and Susan Rice. The highest-paid staffer is Molly Groom at $185,656, who is the Policy Advisor For Immigration, and the second-highest-paid at $183,164 is Elizabeth Hone Senior Policy Advisor For Broadband. The average White House salary this year is $95,718 and the median salary is $84,537. The total annual payroll cost for the Biden-Harris White House is $49.5 million, which is the highest in US history (adjusted for inflation), see the Forbes article “Biden’s Bloated White House Payroll Is Most Expensive In American History:”
If the White House payroll is a leading indicator of the president’s commitment to expand government then taxpayers have a reason for concern. Projected four-year costs of Biden’s White House payroll could top $200 million. For comparison, inflation adjusted, the Trump administration spent $164.3 million (2017-2020) and the Obama administration spent $188.5 million (2009-2012).
4. By gender, the average salary for the 304 female White House employees is $94,047 compared to the $98,091 average for the 214 male staffers, which is a gender pay gap of 4.1% based on average salaries. The White House is reporting slightly different figures of a $93,752 average salary for women and $94,639 for men, a gender pay gap of only 1%, and is taking credit for “narrowing the gender pay gap” according to various media reports here, here and here.
5. But there’s a big problem with the White House’s gender pay gap math that will most likely be ignored and not reported — it’s based on average staff salaries by gender instead of the conventional, widely accepted comparison of median earnings or salaries to calculate gender pay differentials. For example, the Bureau of Labor Statistics always compares median earnings by gender and reported recently that in 2019 “women who were full-time wage and salary workers had median usual weekly earnings that were 82 percent of those of male full-time wage and salary workers.” From the Census Bureau’s most recent report on the gender pay gap, “The female-to-male earnings ratio compares the median earnings of women working full-time, year-round to the median earnings of men working full-time, year-round. The 2019 female-to-male earnings ratio was 0.823, not statistically different from the 2018 ratio (0.816).” Likewise, the Census Bureau always reports median household income and not average household income. Similarly, prices for new and existing home sales are always reported as median values and not average prices. In all of the cases above median values are considered to be a better statistical measure than the average (or mean) of what a typical employee (or household) is earning or what a typical home is selling for. And gender differences in median pay and the 18% gender pay gap based on median earnings is exactly what the White House referenced last March in its “Proclamation on National Equal Pay Day, 2021: “Women working full-time, year-round are typically paid just 82 cents for every dollar paid to men.”
But there might a good reason the White House departed from standard methodology and reported average and not median salaries because the median salary of its 304 female staffers is $80,000 (half make more than $80,000 and half make less) compared to the median male salary of $100,000 (half make more and half make less). Therefore, the typical female staffer in the Biden-Harris White House currently earns only 80 cents for every $1 a male staffer earns, and there is a 20% gender pay gap at the Biden White House. That pay gap is more than two times greater than the average gender pay gap for the Washington, DC labor market of 9.3% according to the most recent data available from the Department of Labor (see Table 3) for 2019. If the White House had been consistent and used the same standard pay gap methodology that it and everybody normally use including government agencies like the BLS and Census, it would have to report that “Women working full-time at the Biden-Harris White House are typically paid just 80 cents for every dollar paid to men.”
6. Stated in dollars, the typical female staffer working in the Biden White House earns $20,000 less on average per year than the typical male staffer. Because of that significant gender pay gap, women working for Biden and Harris will have to continue to work until early April in 2022 before they earn what the typical male staffer will earn working just this year. That is, Equal Pay Day for the female White House staffers won’t take place until next April 6, 2022!
And yet despite the 20% gender pay gap at the Biden-Harris White House, we can expect Biden can be to make presidential proclamations every March like this one earlier this year for Equal Pay Day:
Equal Pay Day is a reminder of the work that still remains to advance equity and ensure that all Americans have the opportunity to reach their full potential. This day is a symbolic representation of how far into this year women must work to catch up to what men made in the previous year. Women working full-time, year-round are typically paid just 82 cents for every dollar paid to men [based on differences in median earnings]. It is a day that calls us to action — to renew our commitment to the principles of equity and equal opportunity that define who we are as Americans.
Women lose thousands of dollars each year, and hundreds of thousands over a lifetime, because of the gender and racial wage gap. In 2019, the typical woman who worked full time took home just 82 percent of the typical man’s pay. The disparities are even greater for Black, Native American, and Hispanic women, who earned 63 percent, 60 percent, and 55 percent of white men’s wages, respectively.
Female staffers at the White House might want to ask their bosses Biden and Harris why they talk so much about gender disparities, pay discrimination, and achieving equal pay while they suffer from a glass ceiling at the White House and an annual pay disparity of $20,000 compared to their male counterparts!
The female staffers might want to ask their boss why he talks so much about gender disparities, pay discrimination, and ensuring equal pay while they suffer from a glass ceiling at the White House and an annual pay disparity of $20,000 compared to their male counterparts!
Bottom Line: In reality, the pay gap that has persisted every year at the White House including for eight years during the Obama-Biden administration is not likely the result of gender discrimination, just like the findings of gender earnings gaps in the general economy or at specific companies or organizations are also not likely the result of gender discrimination. While Obama, Biden, Harris, and other gender activists constantly lecture us about gender pay disparities nationally, with the assumption that any unadjusted earnings gaps using aggregate median salaries can only result from gender discrimination, the persistent gender pay gap at the White House exposes the hypocrisy of Biden and his wage gap activist supporters.
If a 20% gender pay gap at the Biden White House results from factors having nothing to do with gender discrimination, isn’t it possible that the 18% national gender pay gap also has very little to do with gender discrimination? If a 20% White House gender pay gap can be explained by factors other than discrimination, can’t a similar gender pay gap, if it exists at Target, Facebook, the University of Michigan, large law firms, or ExxonMobil, also be explained by factors other than discrimination?
President Biden and VP Harris can’t have it both ways, either: a) there are gender earnings differences throughout the economy and in any organization including at the White House, which can be explained by factors other than gender discrimination including age, years of continuous work experience, education, differences in positions, hours worked, marital status, number of children, workplace environment and safety, industry differences, etc., or b) any gender pay gap in aggregate, unadjusted salaries automatically exposes gender discrimination – including the White House – and Biden needs to explain why he is “waging a war on his women staffers” by paying a typical female staffer less than her male counterparts.
So either: a) there is a glass ceiling at the White House and Discriminator-in-Chief Biden is guilty himself of paying his female staffers significantly less than men by $20,000 per year on average, or b) Biden is guilty of statistical fraud and deception for continuing to spread misinformation about the alleged discrimination-based gender pay gap at the national level.
Perhaps the persistent gender pay gap at the White House will move us further in the direction of statistical and economic sanity on an issue that has been plagued for generations by politics, gender demagoguery, and statistical fraud. It’s time to finally kill the gender wage gap myth once and for all! Let’s follow the advice of AEI’s Christina Sommers to women’s advocates and “Take back the truth.”