Friday, February 26, 2021

Senate Parliamentarian Has Ruled the $15 Minimum Wage Cannot Be Included in President Biden's $1.9 Trillion "Stimulus" Package

Senate Parliamentarian  Elizabeth MacDonough

Well, a small short-term victory, on a technicality, for free exchange. 

Late Thursday night the Senate parliamentarian ruled that the provision to increase the minimum wage to $15/hour cannot be included in the broader $1.9 trillion COVID relief package.

Specifically,  the “reconciliation,” the method by which Democrats plan to pass the $1.9 trillion package, allows any bill in which each provision affects the federal government’s finances to be voted on by a 51-vote majority, as opposed to the regular 60 votes needed to overcome a filibuster. The Democrats don't have the 60 votes to overcome a filibuster of the bill.

The parliamentarian, Elizabeth MacDonough, determined that the provision was "merely incidental" to the government's finances, according to a statute known as the Byrd rule.

The socialist, Senator Bernie Sanders has issued this statement:

I strongly disagree with tonight's decision by the Senate Parliamentarian. The CBO made it absolutely clear that raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour had a substantial budgetary impact and should be allowed under reconciliation. It is hard for me to understand how drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge was considered to be consistent with the Byrd Rule, while increasing the minimum wage is not.

60 percent of the American people want to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. The House of Representatives has voted to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. The President of the United States wants to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. I'm confident that we have a majority in the United States Senate including the Vice President that would vote to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour as part of President Biden's American Rescue Plan. Yet because of the archaic and undemocratic rules of the Senate we are unable to move forward to end starvation wages in this country and raise the income of 32 million struggling Americans. That fight continues.

In the coming days, I will be working with my colleagues in the Senate to move forward with an amendment to take tax deductions away from large, profitable corporations that don't pay workers at least $15 an hour and to provide small businesses with the incentives they need to raise wages. That amendment must be included in this reconciliation bill.

For a full discussion of how the minimum wage hurts everyone, including those who receive the nominal pay wage, see:  Understanding the Numerous Problems With Minimum Wage Laws.


1 comment:

  1. Now that it has been officially denied means there is no doubt it will pass