The statement: “Do you want someone who understands what our disabled vets need, or do you want Rand Paul, who says he’d do away with the Americans with Disabilities Act?”
— Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Jack Conway, at an Oct. 11, 2010 debate in Northern Kentucky.
The ruling: False
The facts: Paul, the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate, has not said he would do away with the ADA, which creates rules for accommodating people with disabilities.
However, Paul has suggested that the law goes too far, incorrectly describing what it requires for many businesses.
This is what Paul said in a May interview on National Public Radio: “I think if you have a two-story office and you hire someone who’s handicapped, it might be reasonable to let him have an office on the first floor rather than the government saying you have to have a $100,000 elevator.”
However, elevators “are not required in facilities that are less than three stories or have fewer than 3,000 square feet per story, unless the building is a shopping center or mall; the professional office of a health care provider; a public transit station; or an airport passenger terminal,” according to the Web site of the U.S. Justice Department, which enforces the law.
The law only requires that public facilities, such as stores, banks, hotels and restaurants, “remove architectural barriers in existing facilities when it is ‘readily achievable,’ i.e., it can be done ‘without much difficulty or expense,’” according to the Justice Department.
Yahoo! News reported soon after Paul’s May statement that the Justice Department and legal experts could not cite any instance of a private employer being successfully sued to install an elevator.