House Approves $15 Federal Minimum Wage

first_imgHouse Democrats approved legislation on Thursday to raise the federal minimum wage for the first time in 10 years.Boosting the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 per hour is a top campaign priority of the Democrats.Speaker Nancy Pelosi said at a press conference with labor leaders and employees just before the vote, “America’s workers deserve a raise.” While lifting a young girl into her arms, she added, “This is what it’s all about… It’s about family.”Under the House bill, tipped workers would have to be paid the same as other employees earning the minimum. Their current rate is $2.13.During the floor debate on Thursday, Republican Ronald Wright from Texas called the legislation a “disastrous bill.” He added that the bill should be renamed the “Raising Unemployment for American Workers Act.”Republicans say that states and municipalities already have the ability to raise the wage beyond the federal minimum, and many of them have done so. They add that higher wages will cost a loss of jobs, especially among smaller business owners.According to a report from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, more than 30 million workers would receive bigger paychecks with a higher wage, lifting more than 1 million workers from poverty. However, the same report adds that between 1 million and 3 million jobs could be lost as a result of an increase.The House voted 231-199, with three Republicans voting for the increase.last_img

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