Tonight the explosive issue of equal pay for equal work is front and center in the news. Today president Obama said it's time to take action signing an executive order and directly at a workplace... See More
Tonight the explosive issue of equal pay for equal work is front and center in the news. Today president Obama said it's time to take action signing an executive order and directly at a workplace secret. The gap in pay between men and women doing the same job. And ABC tells us what changed today. Reporter: Tennessee mother Terri Kelly, an executive at a pharmaceutical company, found out she was underpaid because her husband worked for the same company doing the same job. I really kind of thought this can't be happening in today's world. Reporter: She says he got a higher salary more frequent bumps in pay and was promoted more quickly, earning an estimated $65,000 more than her over nine years. To see consistently year after year the pay disparity was a really tough lesson. Reporter: Today at the white house, president Obama spoke on going on the attack. I have two daughters and I expected them to be treated like anyone else's sons. Tonight half of all works say they're required to stay silent about their salary or they can get in trouble. Employers can argue they are protecting the business culture and the strategy and the competitiveness. This is data that belongs to the company. Reporter: If they can eliminate the pay gap, the average working woman can pay for a year's worth of food in California. 10 months of rent in Georgia and more than 1,900 gallons of gas in Florida. And maybe today's push will enforce woman to ask without fear of losing their job. Look at the behavior lab. 16 volunteers were told they would be paid between $5 and $12 to play a game while 60% of the men asked for higher composition. Only 1/3 of women bargained. $5 okay? Yeah. Great. You have to worry about how are you going to be perceived if you decide to say something. I think it's fair to say women have more challenges. Reporter: Alcohols costing a lifetime of money. The white house will help democrats in the polls in November. It is set to be considered by the senate soon, but unlikely to get through the gop house. Calling it a bizarre obsession and pointing out that women in white house make 88 to a man's dollar.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.