The US House just passed a bill to hike the Federal Minimum wage to $15.00 per hour. A move that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) says would cost the US at least 1.3 million jobs if it became law.
There’s no shortage of data on hourly wages here. A generic search of GraniteGrok on the topic produces 340 articles. But I won’t have to rehash all of that now. Drew Cline at The Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy has provided some fresh and timely material.
The CBO found that a $15 minimum wage likely would
- “Boost workers’ earnings through higher wages, though some of those higher earnings would be offset by higher rates of joblessness;
- “Reduce business income and raise prices as higher labor costs were absorbed by business owners and then passed on to consumers; and
- “Reduce the nation’s output slightly through the reduction in employment and a corresponding decline in the nation’s stock of capital (such as buildings, machines, and technologies).
- “On the basis of those effects and CBO’s estimate of the median effect on employment, the $15 option would reduce total real (inflation-adjusted) family income in 2025 by $9 billion, or 0.1 percent.”
That 1.3 million jobs, Drew also reminds us is the population of New Hampshire. Democrats just passed a bill to unemploy the equivalent of our entire state. And Kuster and Pappas are on-board.
“Progressives on Wednesday had issued a last-minute warning to their moderate colleagues not to help Republicans make any last-minute changes to the bill through the procedural maneuver known as a motion to recommit, or MTR. If moderate Democrats helped the GOP add what the progressives considered poison pill language to the measure, members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus were prepared to vote against it…”
What did Republicans want to see changed? Employers with fewer than 1o employees or less than one million dollars in annual gross income would be exempt. That’s right, the Leftists in the caucus wanted their bill to punish small business owners, right out of business, most likely.
Those Democrats got their way, and the legislation passed 231-199 with Ann Kuster and Chris Pappas supporting the bill.
And while it has little to no chance of surviving the Senate or President Trump, take this as a warning.
The job losses, higher prices, fewer opportunities for low skilled and low-income workers, reduced hours, declines in service, and (oh, by the way) a history of racism and inequality are just a few Democrats away from reality.
Give them the votes, and they will pursue and pass policies that are bad for poor people and the economy. They guarantee it.