Monday, December 19, 2016

Over 3 Out Of 4 People Want The Minimum Wage Raised

The charts above and below are from a recent survey done by Public Policy Polling. It was done on December 6th and 7th of a random national sample of 1,224 registered voters, and has a margin of error of 2.8 points.

Before the election, there was some hope that the minimum wage would be raised. But the election of Donald Trump and the returning Republican majorities in both houses of Congress have dashed those hopes. Trump has said he thinks wages for workers is already too high, and congressional Republicans have successfully blocked all attempts to raise the minimum wage (killing President Obama's attempt to raise it to only $9 an hours).

But the position of Trump and his Republican cohorts is in stark contrast to what the American public wants. Over three out of four Americans (76%) would like to see the minimum wage raised to at least $10 an hour -- and 48% would like it to go up to at least $12 an hour. About 29% want it raised to $15 an hour.

Trump and the Republicans don't understand just how hard it is for a single person to live on the current minimum wage, and impossible to support a family of two or more on that wage. The minimum wage of $7.25 an hour is only about $15,080 a year. The chart below shows the 2016 poverty level as defined by the federal government. Note that the current minimum wage would barely keep a single person above the poverty line, and any family of two or more are below the poverty level (and remember, these are people working hard for 40 hours a week).

It is shameful that the richest country in the world has established a minimum wage that keeps millions of hard-working people in poverty. But the Republicans could not care less about those workers. Their only interest is in getting the rich people more money through massive tax cuts -- the only group that doesn't need more money (or lower taxes). They should be ashamed of themselves, but unfortunately, they have no shame.

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