As expected, Senate Republicans who are "for the working class" and "helping American families" blocked an increase in the minimum wage to $10.10.
Democratic legislation to raise the federal minimum wage hit a road block Wednesday when Republicans blocked the bill in the Senate, setting up an election-year battle over which party can best grow the economy and help struggling Americans.
The bill was six votes shy of the 60 needed to advance the legislation that would gradually up the minimum wage from $7.25 per hour to $10.10 over the span of 30 months. The bill also included increases based on inflation that, if fully implemented, would allow a family of three to earn an annual income above the poverty line.
Republicans argue the bill will hurt small business owners, which may need to cut jobs to account for the higher wages. They cite a study released by the Congressional Budget Office released in February that found, while helping to alleviate poverty, raising minimum wage would cost the country about 500,000 jobs.
In other words, every single Republican in the Senate thinks $10.10 an hour, or the massive yearly wage of $21,000 a year is too much money, because only teenagers make minimum wage (only 24% are in reality and half are white women.) Seems to me that Republicans would want to see that young women, especially mothers, would be paid more to keep them off food stamps, but apparently that's okay with them.
By the way, there's no state in the nation where $21,000 a year can get you an apartment and it still be affordable. In most states you'd need twice that.
Meanwhile, slimebag Sen. Ted Cruz pitched the GOP blocking minimum wage as, get this, a victory for black teenagers.
“Every senator who votes ‘yes’ is voting with an absolute certainty that hundreds of thousands of workers, including a great many African-American teenagers and a great many Hispanic teenagers, will be laid off as a consequence of their vote,” Cruz said. “I would challenge any of the senators in this chamber to look in the eyes of those African-American teenagers, those Hispanic teenagers who are looking for a better opportunity.”
Only one problem. Cruz is full of crap, as usual. In states where minimum wage is higher than the federal minimum, the evidence is clear.
Raising the minimum wage is neither as wonderful as its advocates claim nor as dangerous as its detractors warn. On the upside, it would increase pay for millions of Americans, not only those earning the minimum but also those at fixed increments above it. These are people who could really use a raise. Contrary to what generations of students were taught in freshman econ, new research finds that minimum-wage increases at the state level have caused little, if any, harm to employment. “Outside of the simple Econ 101-type environment, increasing workers’ pay can improve the functioning of the low-wage labor market,” Arindrajit Dube, a University of Massachusetts economist, testified before Congress in March.
Washington State has the highest minimum wage in the nation, indexed to inflation. If raising the minimum wage is so disastrous for employment, then it should have one of the highest unemployment numbers in the nation.
It's 6.3% as of April, below the national average.
Raise the wage, guys.