Political Insight and Analysis From The Wall Street Journal's Capital Bureau

March 23, 2006, 7:48 pm

Fight Over Funding

The prospect of further budget and staff cuts at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has prompted more than 100 lawmakers, mostly Democrats, to make an urgent appeal to the House subcommittee responsible for EEOC oversight.

The lawmakers, led by Ohio Democrat and former EEOC trial attorney Stephanie Tubbs Jones and Michigan Republican Thaddeus McCotter, sent a letter last week calling the administration?s fiscal 2007 budget request for the agency - $8 million less than the current fiscal year - insufficient. Meanwhile, the American Federation of Government Employees, which represents EEOC employees, said it is launching an advertising campaign to build public support for restoring funds. The action follows heavy criticism of an agency restructuring plan. "Our investigators, attorneys and other staff ensure an even playing field for workers, regardless of their race, religion, color national origin, age or disability. But you can?t enforce laws on the cheap or without staff," said union official Gabrielle Martin. - Joi Preciphs