Block that hike
“Tothenakedeye,ahikeinthefederalminimumwagelookslikeadone deal,” Jeremy Lott writes at www.realclearpolitics.com.
“Speaker-designate Nancy Pelosi will include it in the House’s ‘first 100 hours’ agenda. President Bush has said he’ll sign a hike as long as it includes some relief for small businesses.Itwouldbedifficultfortheminority of Republican senators to sustain a filibuster in defense of a wage floor that was set in 1997,” said Mr.Lott,whoistheWarrenT.Brookes JournalismFellowattheCompetitive Enterprise Institute.
“However, there is one big reason fortheDemocrats—yes,Democrats — to avoid hiking the federal minimum wage in 2007. It’s a politically dumbthingtodobecauseitwoulddeprivethemofacrucialget-out-the-vote issue in the 2008 elections.
“Minimum-wage increases were up for vote in six states this year and carried all but one state by overwhelming margins (Coloradans approved it by a more modest margin). Residents of Arizona, Colorado, Missouri,Montana,NevadaandOhiode- cidedthatlow-wageworkersdeserved a raise — out of somebody else’s wallet, of course.
“Theminimum-wagevotehadfour positive effects for Democrats: (1) It gave them control of the U.S. Senate; (2) It added to their majority in the House; (3) It helped them in state gubernatorial and legislative races; and (4) It was a Democrat-friendly issue to rival gay marriage.”
Mr.Lottadded:“Whatmightserve Democrats best at this point is misdirection and demagoguery. They can encourageRepublicansintheSenate tofilibusteritor,failingthat,passabill soridiculousthatevenPresidentBush willhavetovetoit.Thentellvotersthe Man is keeping them down.”