Raising the minimum wage is not a prudent economic move. The amount of people who work for minimum wage is very small compared to the rest of the working public. People who have any self motivation don't work for minimum wage. I have taken several minimum wage jobs in my lifetime. I never stayed there long. Usually, the only ones who work that cheap are teenagers or sloths. I never bought the idea that people are actually trying to support a family on minimum wage. If they are, then they get what they deserve. Get a new job, get an education, or work harder for more money.
Labor unions love the idea of a raised minimum wage. Many labor union contracts have wage levels indexed to the minimum wage. That is where a lot of the pressure is coming from to actually raise the minimum wage. Politicians talk about having a "living wage". The majority of people on minimum wage are not working for a living. Most are part time or menial jobs, not full time employment that would be considered worthy of one making a career.
Since when is it the government's job to tell people what they may or may not pay someone? If I agree to work for $x, then that is between me and my employer. That is nobody's business except mine and my employer's. I personally can not live on minimum wage and would not stay on that level of pay for long. If I were to take and stay on a minimum wage job for any duration of time, then I would be an idiot.
Of course the liberal Bob Etheridge, the 2nd District Congressman who represents my town voted to raise the minimum wage. Anyone in Congress who voted to raise the minumum wage is, as the British would say, "pig ignorant" of economics.
If a small business can afford to pay three workers on minimum wage, the wage gets increased so that the employer can no longer afford the third worker, then someone gets put out of work. That is reality. Who pays for the wage hike? We do, as consumers. The price for the goods and services we consume will be raised to compensate.
All the discussion about banning the employing of illegal immigrant laborers goes out the window with a higher minimum wage. Republicans were willing to do little to stem the tide of illegal immigrants. Democrats actually tried to pick up the mantle of wanting to do something about it, but that didn't last long. If an employer is willing to hire an illegal immigrant at less than $5.15 per hour, why would anyone think that they would be less willing to hire an illegal immigrant if the labor cost for legal labor sources just went up? Of course the employment of illegal aliens at below market prices will increase as a result. It is simply a numbers thing.
We will have more unemployed people, some businesses faltering, increased illegal immigrants in the underground economy, and higher prices on the things and services we buy and use. But it is a "feel good" political move. It makes people feel better about having Democrats in power. What tripe.
Also from the WMPM website:
Etheridge Votes To Raise Federal Minimum Wage To $7.25 Hour - US Representative Bob Etheridge (D-Lillington) voted for bipartisan legislation on Wednesday to raise the federal minimum wage for the first time in a decade, from $5.15 an hour to $7.25 an hour. The legislation would affect at least 211,000 North Carolinians . "A pay raise for North Carolina 's working families is long overdue," said Etheridge. "The minimum wage has remained stagnant for a decade, while the cost of gasoline, groceries, health care and higher education rises steadily. This common-sense legislation will make a real difference in the lives of North Carolina families." The bill would raise the minimum wage by $2.10 over a two-year period. The bill raises the minimum wage to $5.85 60 days after enactment; to $6.55 one year later and to $7.25 one year after that. North Carolina 's minimum wage is currently $6.15. The federal minimum wage had not been raised since 1997, and when adjusted for inflation, it is at its lowest level in 51 years. The legislation now moves to the Senate for consideration.