Minimum Wage Hike Is Super-Popular

Moneybox
A blog about business and economics.
Feb. 21 2013 10:36 AM

Raising the Minimum Wage is Overwhelmingly Popular

1361461408481

Today's new Pew poll confirms that raising the minimum wage to $9 an hour is an overwhelmingly popular idea, that commands majority support from self-identified Republican voters. I'm not one who believs in the vox populi vox dei theory of governance, but as I wrote in my post on the minimum wage and the doom of the GOP a viable political party has to have something to offer in the face of these kind of numbers.

And the problem Republicans face on the minimum wage front isn't that their stance is less popular than the Democrats' stance. It's that not only is their stance less popular, but they're not offering any alternative policies to help low-wage workers either. Ideas like the Earned Income Tax Credit or unconditional cash grants have sometimes played a role as proposed market-oriented alternatives to labor market regulation, but the present-day GOP doesn't seem favorably disposed to either of them. Over the course of this winter, it became clear that Republicans couldn't even muster enthusiasm for an extended payroll tax holiday as a way to put money in working class pockets. As long-time readers know, my personal obsession is with more stimulative monetary policy that would be a boon to both low-wage workers and to those currently trapped outside formal labor markets but Republicans don't support that either.

Advertisement

So with no affirmative agenda to assist low-wage workers, the debate will continue to be framed around the Democrats' overwhelmingly popular minimum wage proposal and it'll pass. Probably not in this congress, but perhaps in the next.

Matthew Yglesias is the executive editor of Vox and author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

Smash and Grab

Will competitive Senate contests in Kansas and South Dakota lead to more late-breaking races in future elections?

Stop Panicking. America Is Now in Very Good Shape to Respond to the Ebola Crisis.

The 2014 Kansas City Royals Show the Value of Building a Mediocre Baseball Team

The GOP Won’t Win Any Black Votes With Its New “Willie Horton” Ad

Sleater-Kinney Was Once America’s Best Rock Band

Can it be again?

Technocracy

Forget Oculus Rift

This $25 cardboard box turns your phone into an incredibly fun virtual reality experience.

One of Putin’s Favorite Oligarchs Wants to Start an Orthodox Christian Fox News

These Companies in Japan Are More Than 1,000 Years Old

Trending News Channel
Oct. 20 2014 6:17 PM Watch Flashes of Lightning Created in a Lab  
  News & Politics
The World
Oct. 20 2014 1:50 PM Why We Shouldn’t Be Too Sure About the Supposed Deal to Return the Abducted Nigerian Schoolgirls
  Business
Moneybox
Oct. 20 2014 7:23 PM Chipotle’s Magical Burrito Empire Keeps Growing, Might Be Slowing
  Life
Dear Prudence
Oct. 20 2014 3:12 PM Terror Next Door Prudie advises a letter writer whose husband is dangerously, violently obsessed with the neighbors.
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 20 2014 1:10 PM Women Are Still Losing Jobs for Getting Pregnant
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 20 2014 7:15 AM The Slate Doctor Who Podcast: Episode 9 A spoiler-filled discussion of "Flatline."
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 20 2014 9:13 PM The Smart, Talented, and Utterly Hilarious Leslie Jones Is SNL’s Newest Cast Member
  Technology
Future Tense
Oct. 20 2014 4:59 PM Canadian Town Cancels Outdoor Halloween Because Polar Bears
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Oct. 20 2014 11:46 AM Is Anybody Watching My Do-Gooding? The difference between being a hero and being an altruist.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.