The House Appropriations Committee threw working people a symbolic bone tuesday. The Committee voted 32 to 27 to raise the minimum wage from $5.15 an hour to the princely sum of $7.25 an hour over a two year period. It's about time the politicians begin to discuss this issue. The buying power of the minimum wage has not been lower for the last 56 years. Working men and women in this country fall further behind each day.
For a person making $5.15 an hour and working 40 hours a week for 52 weeks, the yearly salary is $10,712. Republicans will be quick to tell you that only young people work for minimum wage, and they don't need to pay room and board because they live at home. Crap! Take a look around in your local fast food resturant, or grocery store, or mall - most of the employees I see don't look like high school kids to me. They are adults of all ages, and many of them are single parents. Why can't the richest country in the world pay its workers a decent and livable wage?
For a person making $7.25 an hour and working 40 hours a week for 52 weeks, the yearly salary is $15,080. Would you like to try to live and support a couple of kids on this salary? Any honest person will admit that $7.25 an hour is not a lot of money, and not enough to raise a family on. I don't even see how a single person can live on it. But at least it is something. Too bad it won't happen.
This move by the Appropriations Committee is purely symbolic because they know it has no chance of being passed in this republican regime. It is an attempt to get the votes of working people without really delivering anything substantive. Republican's won't vote for the raise because their financial base is the business lobby. These people would love to see the minimum wage abolished altogether so they could more thoroughly abuse their employees.
Republicans claim that raising the minimum wage would cause inflation. It's funny that giving working people a raise is inflationary, but giving millions of dollars to management is not. This is the kind of greedy republican thinking that is destroying our country.
Republicans also claim that raising the minimum wage would cause widespread job loss. All I can say to this, is that it did not happen the last time it was raised. This false argument is just another republican scare tactic.
Raising the minimum wage is past due, but that is of little concern to Congress. So in advance of the coming vote, let me say, THANKS FOR NOTHING YOU GREEDY CORPORATE WHORES!!!!!!! All you've done is to insult working people all across this country. I sincerely hope you pay for it in November.