Will Liberals Raise the Minimum Wage?
It’s been ten years since the federal minimum wage was raised. It’s currently $7.25, where it was set in 2009, and it hasn’t been raised to keep up with inflation.
Because the minimum wage has been stagnant for many years, millions of workers in the United States are not able to make ends meet. Despite their hard work, their paychecks don’t cover their expenses. They’re forced to work multiple jobs or sacrifice basic needs to keep afloat.
As the “party of the people,” many lawmakers in the Liberal party wish to raise the minimum wage. The goal is to help low-income Americans in service jobs earn better livings, so they can lead lives of dignity. So the question remains– will liberals raise the minimum wage?
2020 Candidates Endorse $15 Minimum Wage
Almost all of the Liberal candidates in the presidential primary race endorse a $15 minimum wage. This would be a living wage in much, but not all, of the country.
Candidates who endorse a $15 minimum wage include Amy Klobuchar, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg, Tom Steyer, and Tulsi Gabbard. Andrew Yang is an outlier, supporting a “freedom dividend,” or universal basic income of $1000 a month, instead.
House Democrats Push for Higher Wages
In 2019, Liberals in the House of Representatives passed the Raise the Wage Act, which would raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025. The legislation did not pass the Republican-controlled Senate and never took effect.
Some data suggests that raising wages hurts businesses, and as a result, their employees. When businesses are required to pay higher wages, fewer employees are hired and benefits may be cut. Republicans often cite this as the reason they do not support raising the minimum wage.
Incremental Change is Already Happening
Several states have already required that their businesses pay at least $15 an hour. Many other states have a minimum wage higher than the $7.25 federal minimum wage, and are slowly increasing the minimum wage over a number of years.
We can expect to see higher wages on a state-by-state basis for years to come. We may see a change in the federal wage standard after the 2020 election cycle, particularly if Liberals gain more governmental control.