Above and beyond the minimum wage

September 16, 2014

The campaign to raise the U.S. minimum wage is gaining traction this election cycle. There are six statewide initiatives — four of them in Republican-controlled states — to raise the state wage floor above the federally mandated $7.25 per hour. “Activists on both sides of the issue say the proposals stand a good chance of passing,” writes Andy Sullivan.

This is where the initiatives are on the ballot:

minwage

The movement to raise the minimum wage has been a traditional policy initiative of the Democrats, with President Obama’s proposal to raise the minimum wage blocked by congressional Republicans. If multiple measures pass in heavily Republican states, however, Congress might feel pressure to reconsider the federal issue, says Sullivan. The ballot questions could also boost Democrats’ chances of retaining Senate control in the November midterms, adds Sullivan, by encouraging low-wage workers to come to the polls.

The last federal hike was in 2007, after Arizona, Colorado, Missouri, Montana, Nevada and Ohio, all successfully raised state minimum wages. If the current ballot initiatives succeed, an estimated 419,000 workers would get pay increases.

2 comments

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/

Typical Reuters. No one cares about this issue – they’re just trying to drum up support for a president who has failed at every other thing that matters

Posted by Declan54 | Report as abusive

Ms. Ferro neglected to mention the key fact that the ballot initiatives in California and Illinois are in fact non-binding advisory questions that have no more legal effect than a public opinion poll. Illinois has two other such “advisory questions” on the ballot.

All of them are transparent, partisan attempts to use meaningless ballot questions to drive higher turnout by state Democrats.

Posted by realist50 | Report as abusive