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Do you think the Minimum Wage should be raised to $22/hr ?

$22 Minimum Wage Suggested by Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren

Tripling the minimum wage to $22 an hour from its current $7.25 an hour has been suggested by Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who until now had seemed to be keeping a low profile after defeating Republican Scott Brown in November for the Massachusetts seat.

In his State of the Union address on Feb. 13, President Barack Obama proposed increasing the federal minimum wage to $9 an hour.

"If we started in 1960, and we said [that] as productivity goes up, that is as workers are producing more — then the minimum wage was going to go up the same. And if that were the case, then the minimum wage today would be about $22 an hour," said Warren, the administration's former Special Advisor for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Warren was speaking at last week's Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearing on "Keeping up with a Changing Economy: Indexing the Minimum Wage."

Warren added: "So my question is . . . What happened to the other $14.75? It sure didn’t go to the worker."

Panelist Arindrajit Dube, an assistant professor at the Department of Economics at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, responded to Warren's inquiry by drawing another comparison that appeared to suggest that the approximately $14 difference between today's actual minimum wage and Warren's hypothetical minimum wage was going to the nation's top 1 percent of earners.

"The answer to your question, 'who got the other $14?' we can answer with the following comparison. Had the minimum wage grown at the same pace [of] incomes going to the top 1 percent of the taxpayers, the minimum wage would have stood at $33 an hour before the recession in 2007."

Warren went on to suggest that such an increase in minimum wage would not lead to fewer jobs, as argued by many economists, but rather that raising the minimum wage by several dollars an hour was in fact doable.

"During my Senate campaign, I ate a No. 11 at McDonald’s many, many times a week and I know the price on that one, $7.19," she said. "According to the data on the analysis of what would happen if we raised the minimum wage to $10.10 over three years, the price increase on that item would be about four cents, so instead of being $7.19 it would be $7.23. Are you telling me that's unsustainable?"

Warren's $10.10 minimum-wage option has been floated recently by other Democrats, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi who earlier this month proposed to her colleagues on the hill that the nation's minimum wage should be raised to $10.

Opponents to a minimum wage increase argue that such a raise in hourly pay would have a negative effect on overall employment, preventing employers from hiring new entry-level workers and keeping the unemployment rate at or around 8 percent for years to come.


Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 5:18 PM on Mar. 19, 2013 in Politics & Current Events

Answers (16)
  • That is a little high but wouldn't that be awesome! Only single people can barley get by on the $7.25 and that's if they don't have a car payment or anything else to pay off.

    Answer by LostSoul88 at 5:20 PM on Mar. 19, 2013

  • $15 is more realistic

    Answer by butterflyblue19 at 5:21 PM on Mar. 19, 2013

  • Absoluteyl not

    Answer by Dardenella at 5:22 PM on Mar. 19, 2013

  • Sure if you wanna pay $15 for a McNasty burger! What happened to the goal of $10.10 by 2015? That's more realistic.


    Answer by mrsmom110 at 5:24 PM on Mar. 19, 2013

  • What about the people that are making less than 22 an hour now after years in employment and raises? Will their pay increase? Hell I know SO would rather work an easy job for 22 than his back breaking one now for less.

    Answer by staciandababy at 5:27 PM on Mar. 19, 2013

  • That's what it is in Norway isn't it? I mean if gas prices and groceries are going up, minimum wage should go up too! How the hell else are people supposed to get by with this economy the way it is?

    Answer by uwmilf at 5:35 PM on Mar. 19, 2013

  • Pointing out the difference in wage in regards to what it should have been economically is a far cry from suggesting that it should be that now. However it may be used as a means to justify why she is in agreeance with raising it to the proposed $9/hror even a higher $10.10 an hour. But it is not the same thing as suggesting that she wants to raise it to $22 an hour. She was merely using mathematics to show the disproportion in today's wages. There IS a difference.

    Answer by KristiS11384 at 5:36 PM on Mar. 19, 2013

  • The price of all other goods and services would skyrocket and nobody would be any better off. Wonderful idea.

    Answer by QuinnMae at 5:39 PM on Mar. 19, 2013

  • yeah...OP's article is misleading. Kristi is right. Warren was using a 2012 study from the Center for Economic and Policy Research that said that the minimum wage would have hit $21.72 an hour last year if it had been tied to the increases seen in worker productivity since 1968. she was simply wondering why that hasnt happened (probably in hopes of making the $9-10 an hour min look good).

    just curious...was the "it'll hurt employers, cost jobs, etc" argument used the last time the min wage was raised? did it cause those problems when it was raised?


    Answer by okmanders at 5:49 PM on Mar. 19, 2013

  • KristiS11384

    Answer by KristiS11384 at 5:55 PM on Mar. 19, 2013

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