Senate Republicans today blocked the Democrats’ bill that would have raised the federal minimum wage to $10.10 per hour. Previously the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office predicted that the bill would cost about 500,000 jobs, but the Democrats don’t care. As expected, they immediately pounced.
Instead, Senate Democrats plan to use the vote to contrast their party with the GOP as the critical November election approaches.
Democratic lawmakers sought to make the distinction in the moments leading up to the vote. A minimum wage increase, they argued, is the only way to offer lower wage workers a fair chance at achieving the American dream.
A full-time worker receiving the minimum wage earns about $15,000 per year, far below the $23,850 poverty level for a family of four. The CBO report found that a minimum wage increase to $10.10 would move 900,000 people above the poverty threshold.
“Who is this chamber is going to stand with millions of Americans who work full-time but are left on the brink of poverty, struggling to make ends meet?” asked Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, who authored the legislation. “And who is going to vote against them?” (Read More)
Naturally the Democrats won’t mention the 500,000 Americans who will lose their jobs if the minimum wage is increased.
Chuck Schumer said they will bring the bill up “again and again and again.” At least until the next election. Then they’ll probably forget about it for a while.