Back in September 2014, Erick Erickson, of both Red State and Fox “News,” came on Rush Limbaugh’s show to say that people making minimum wage are mostly teenagers, and people who’ve failed at life. These words are emblematic of the way the GOP still sees minimum wage workers. On Tuesday, during the State of the Union address, President Obama dared Republicans to try and live on $15,000 per year, because he knows how they see the minimum wage. We all know they were laughing on the inside at that, because they would never deign to truly walk in the shoes of someone living on the minimum wage (many Democrats won’t either, but a few have tried).
Congressman Tom McClintock (R-CA) also explained the GOP point of view on the minimum wage in an interview earlier today. McClintock said that the minimum wage needs to stay low for minorities who aren’t worth it, according to The Raw Story. He brought back an argument we’re tired of hearing, which says that raising the minimum wage would tear the bottom rung off the economic ladder, and unskilled workers would not even be able to get jobs at that point.
He also said that other thing we’re sick to death of hearing, which is:
It’s not supposed to support a family. The minimum wage is that first job when you have no skills, no experience, no working history. That’s how you get into the job market, that’s how you develop that experience, develop that work record, get your first raise, then your next raise, then your promotion.
How is it that these people are so totally unaware of the fact that, for most of its history, a person could live on the minimum wage, and even raise a small family? That was the whole point of creating it to begin with. How ignorant of basic American history do these people have to be to not know that?
Virginia Senate Republicans just voted to kill a minimum wage increase of their own. They voted 11-3 to set the legislation aside for the rest of this legislative session, according to the Daily Press. While four red states did manage to raise their minimum wages back in November, they did so on ballot initiatives. When it’s up to lawmakers, Republicans flat-out won’t do it.
Which brings us back to what Erick Erickson said five months ago. Republicans see minimum wage workers as workers who aren’t worth it. Forget the economic consequences to everyone. Forget sticking to their “helping families” and “lifting people up” mantras. And forget their rhetoric about how raising the minimum wage actually hurts low-wage, unskilled, and young workers. The bottom line is, Erickson hit that nail on the head back then. Low-wage workers, to them, failed at life, and should be left to rot.
Featured image via Mediaite