President Barack Obama on Thursday visited the site of the historic 1848 women’s rights convention in Seneca Falls, N.Y., leaving behind a copy of the first bill he signed in office, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.
Obama’s visit, ahead of Women’s Equality Day next week, came during his bus tour through upstate New York and Pennsylvania promoting his college affordability proposals. Obama also left a copy of his remarks during the 2009 bill signing.
The law made it easier for women to file equal-pay lawsuits by establishing that the 180-day statute of limitations on filing claims of discriminatory wage practices resets with every paycheck.
“It’s an honor to visit Seneca Falls and recall the righteous struggle that found expression here,” Obama said at the Women’s Rights National Historical Park. “I’m also proud to add an example of Lilly Ledbetter’s leadership to your collection. Thanks for all you do to honor the character and perseverance of America’s women.”
Obama made brief remarks about the law and its goals, before posing for pictures with those in attendance.
“We want to make a little contribution,” Obama said in leaving behind a copy of the bill.
“Please! We’ll take it,” one woman remarked.
Obama purchased several souvenirs for his daughters, the White House said, including copies of the Declaration of Sentiments that was signed at the Women’s Rights Convention.