Vice Chair of Wasatch County GOP resigns amid criticism over letter on equal pay for women

A file photo of the Utah State Capitol in Salt Lake City.

SALT LAKE CITY — The Vice Chair of the Wasatch County Republican Party has resigned after receiving a wave of criticism for a letter to the editor he wrote in opposition to equal pay for women.

Cindie Quintana, Director of Communications for the Utah GOP, confirmed to Fox 13 News that James Green resigned as Vice Chair of the Wasatch County GOP at 2 p.m. Friday.

Green told Fox 13 News he’s received a lot of feedback over the letter, in which he said that paying women more would mean paying men less.

“You wouldn’t believe the hateful, vile comments and messages I’ve received,” Green said of the reaction.

He said people were blaming the party for his personal opinions, so he decided to step down from his role as vice chair.

“I didn’t want to hurt the party any further,” he said. “They didn’t force me to do it. There was no coercion. I chose to step down.”

The former vice chair added, “I will pray for America.”

Green wrote a second letter apologizing for his first letter earlier this week, saying he doesn’t “feel the government should be dictating to private establishments what they must do in regard to employment, hiring, or wages.”

Rep. Tim Quinn, a Republican representing Wasatch County, issued a statement Friday distancing the county organization from the opinions espoused by Green in the original letter.

“I am shocked and appalled to learn how James Green feels about equal pay for women. I don’t know where this belief came from. I do not subscribe publicly or privately to the words or the spirit behind these words, thoughts or ideas. Of course, the Wasatch County Republican Party and I are for equal pay and rights for all people.

My hope is that there will be a sincere apology. I appreciate that he immediately stepped down from his position within the GOP.”

In the original letter to the editor, Green wrote: “If businesses are forced to pay women the same as male earnings, that means they will have to reduce the pay for the men they employ… simple economics.”

Green went on to write that this will make it harder for men to support their families, “which will mean more Mothers will be forced to leave the home (where they may prefer to be) to join the workforce to make up the difference.”

Click here for more on the reaction to the letter as well as the full text of Green’s follow-up letter and apology.