LETTER: Misinformation being spread on minimum wage
Plenty of misinformation and innuendo are going around with regard to the Obama administration’s efforts to raise wages. Wild numbers are attributed to the true number of minimum wage earners: 15 million, 28 million.
Bureau of Labor stats indicate the number is 3.56 million that are at or below the federal minimum. That’s roughly 2.7 percent of workers. These are largely part-time workers, and as a percentage of all workers it is actually down from 13 percent in 1979 when BLS began keeping records. About 63 percent of these workers are actually second or third wage earners in the household. Some 50 percent are under age 25, and a majority of those are teenagers.
Notably, an American University study showed among households with a minimum wage earner, 94 percent had a second earner that held a job substantially above minimum. Remember also that 32 states already have a minimum equal to or higher than the feds.
My observations include the fact that a targeted large employer (Walmart) actually pulled out of the Washington, D.C., area when authorities there tried to impose a minimum wage requirement; six potential stores with maybe 100 potential employees each … do the math.
Someone mentioned the general opinion in the country is we would be willing to add a dollar here and there at the retail level to accommodate the increased cost of wage increases. But remember that would apply also to the newly increased wage earners, raising their cost of living; and how long do you think it would be before the Democrats realize it’s a zero-sum game, the lower income citizens are right back where they were before … and inevitably they’ll want another increase.
And finally, make no mistake, the real reason for the administration’s crusade for minimum wages is because many unions peg their contract wages to a formula partly based on minimum wages. Don’t believe it? Check the website for the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union.
Just another nod from the administration to those dependable supporters. Labor unions spent $174 million in the 2012 election cycle, and surprise, 91 percent went to Democrats.
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