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Women rally in support of Elizabeth Warren by sharing their own pregnancy discrimination stories

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WASHINGTON — Women are sharing their stories on social media of pregnancy discrimination in support of Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., who came under attack from conservative outlets this week over her claim that she had been fired in 1971 for being pregnant.

“[I]f you don’t understand what this furor over the Elizabeth Warren pregnancy firing story is about, ask pretty much any woman in your life over 35,” culture writer Anne Helen Petersen wrote on Twitter, prompting some to respond with their personal experiences.

A flurry of blogs and online outlets also came to Warren’s defense, posting stories such as “Elizabeth Warren’s critics forgot: Pregnancy lasts for nine months,” “If You Think Elizabeth Warren Is Lying, You’ve Never Been a Woman in the Workplace,” and “Elizabeth Warren’s Pregnancy Story Is All Too Common. We Know Because We Live It.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., who has not endorsed a candidate in the Democratic primary, shared on Twitter that she was asked just this year if a job offer could be rescinded if a person was pregnant. (It has been illegal to do so for more than 40 years.)

On the presidential campaign trail, Warren frequently tells the story of how she was fired from her job as a special needs teacher in June of 1971 when she was visibly 6 months pregnant with her first child. Warren points to this experience of being a 22-year-old woman with a baby on the way and no job as a turning point in her life that ultimately led her down a path to public service.

The Washington Free Beacon, a conservative news outlet, on Monday published minutes from an April 1971 board of education meeting documenting a unanimous vote to extend Warren’s teaching job for the following school year. Warren, who would have been around 4 months pregnant at the time of the meeting, says her colleagues did not know then that she was pregnant.

“I was pregnant but nobody knew it,” Warren told CBS News in an interview later Monday. “And then a couple of months later, when I was six months pregnant and it was pretty obvious, the principal called me in, wished me luck, and said he was going to hire someone else for the job.”

Warren’s critics seized on the opportunity to claim that the senator was lying about being fired and sought to further discredit her account by pointing to a 2007 interview at the University of California at Berkeley in which she describes leaving her teaching job but does not mention being fired as her reason for doing so.

Warren defended herself, writing on Twitter that “[w]hen I was 22 and finishing my first year of teaching, I had an experience millions of women will recognize. By June I was visibly pregnant—and the principal told me the job I’d already been promised for the next year would go to someone else.”

Warren also posted a video of herself reading a handful of tweets that women sent her sharing their own experiences of pregnancy discrimination.

“Now, this was a long time ago,” Warren says in the video in reference to her job loss, “but we know, this kind of stuff still happens today. Sometimes subtly, and frankly, sometimes not so subtly. So, I get out and on the campaign trail, I tell my story. And I’ve asked other people to tell their stories as well. I think that’s a good way to fight back.”

Many were also quick to defend Warren’s 2007 speech, noting that personal experiences of discrimination are not always easy to discuss publicly. In one of the tweets that Warren read in the video, a woman named Sarah writes that it took her mom more than 30 years to tell her own daughters how she lost her job after she became pregnant, adding that women “don’t share this stuff willy nilly.”

“So true, Sarah,” Warren said in response.

Congress passed the Pregnancy Discrimination Act in 1978, seven years after Warren says she was let go from her job, making it illegal to discriminate against pregnant women. But the problem still persists.

Thousands of women file pregnancy discrimination charges with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission every year and a recent investigative report from The New York Times demonstrates that discrimination remains prevalent across industries for pregnant people today.



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Hillary Clinton attacks 'authoritarian leader' Boris before saying she ‘fears' for Brits

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HILLARY CLINTON blasted Boris Johnson as an “authoritarian leader” in a shocking attack as she claimed she “fears” for the UK.

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‘Of course’ Trump was wrong to ask China to probe Bidens

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Sen. Ted Cruz said Sunday that it was wrong for President Donald Trump to call on China to probe former Vice President Joe Biden and his son in the Texas Republican’s most direct rebuke of the president yet.

Asked on CBS’s “Face the Nation” whether Trump’s comments were “appropriate,” Cruz said “of course not.”

“Elections in the U.S. should be decided by Americans and it’s not the business of foreign countries, any foreign countries, to be interfering in our elections,” he said.

“Face the Nation” host Margaret Brennan then asked if it was improper for Trump to ask Ukraine to probe the Bidens, as he did in a July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy — a call that is now at the center of an impeachment inquiry.

“Listen, foreign countries should stay out of American elections,” Cruz said. “That’s true for Russia. That’s true for Ukraine. That’s true for China. That’s true for all of them. It should be the American people deciding elections. I don’t know what [Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani has] been saying. I do know though that we should decide our elections. It should be the American people making those decisions.”

But Cruz added that it would make “sense” for Giuliani, who is at the center of the president’s campaign to have Ukraine investigate the Bidens, testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., has already invited Giuliani to do so.

“I’d like to see Rudy testify,” Cruz said. “Yes.”

Cruz’s comments come as Republicans have struggled to align on their responses to Trump’s requests to have Chinese and Ukrainian officials investigate the former vice president and his son. Some Republicans defended Trump’s China remarks by saying the president wasn’t “serious” despite Trump never having indicated he was joking.

Asked Thursday about whether he was serious about calling on China to investigate the Bidens, Trump said, “China has to do whatever they want.”

“If they want to look into something, they can look into it,” the president continued. “If they don’t want to look into it, they don’t have to. Frankly, are far as I’m concerned, if China wants to look into something, I think that’s great. And if they don’t want to, I think that’s great too. That’s up to China.”

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he “can’t comment” on whether Trump was serious in his ask to have China investigate the Biden family.

“I can’t comment on whether he was serious or not,” Mnuchin said, adding that the topic had not been brought up in trade negotiations between the two countries. “And in the Oval Office, when the president was asked about this in front of the Vice Premier, the president made very clear, they can do what they want. So, again, people who are trying to imply that the president is asking for things or quid pro quos, I think this is ridiculous.”

The president began ramping up his push to have China probe Hunter’s business dealings this month in the face of House Democrats’ rapidly escalating impeachment probe.

“China should start an investigation into the Bidens because what happened in China is just about as bad as what happened with Ukraine,” Trump told reporters outside the White House earlier this month.

The president has repeatedly accused the former vice president’s son of using a 2013 trip on Air Force Two with his father to procure $1.5 billion from China for a private equity fund he had started. There has been no evidence of corruption on behalf of either Biden. The Washington Post found Trump’s claims false. And a spokesman for Hunter Biden said he did not acquire an equity interest in the fund until 2017, after his father had left office. Meanwhile, Hunter’s total capitalization from the fund at the time amounted to about $4.2 million, not the $1.5 billion Trump alleged.

On Sunday, Hunter announced through his attorney that he would step down from the Chinese-backed firm by the end of the month. Hunter’s attorney, George Mesires, wrote that the former vice president’s son “never anticipated the barrage of false charges against both him and his father by the president of the United States.”



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Brexit countdown: EU gives Boris 48 HOURS to strike deal – 'Significant work to be done'

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BORIS JOHNSON has been given a tight deadline of only 48 hours to secure an agreement with the EU as the scheduled October 31 withdrawal deadline creeps closer.

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