Via The Hill:
Democrats believe they are winning the battle over the minimum wage, despite an official budget report this week that found it would cost the economy a half-million jobs.
House and Senate Democratic aides told The Hill they believe they can discredit and overcome the CBO report, which offered ammunition to Republicans who argue a wage hike would hurt the economy.
The Democrats bolster their case by pointing to a November Gallup poll that found 76 percent of those surveyed favor raising the minimum wage from $7.25 per hour to $9.
They also argue the CBO report is contradicted by other economic research, and tout a letter pushed by the White House in which 600 economists say raising the minimum wage would have no major effect on jobs.
“This report is not a major obstacle,” one House Democratic leadership aide said.
“Really the polling is so strong in favor of the minimum wage,” another House Democratic aide said. “Do centrist Republicans really want to go back to their districts and say they opposed this over some abstract report that lots of economists have criticized? There is just not enough there, there.”
Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), the lead sponsor of the Senate bill to raise the minimum wage, said the CBO report shows raising the minimum wage benefits a large number of people so it is a net positive.
“That’s why an overwhelming majority of Americans — on both sides of the aisle — want Congress to raise the wage, and I look forward to having this important bill on the Senate floor in the weeks ahead,” Harkin said.
Republicans say Democrats are kidding themselves.
“That CBO report showed what Republicans have been saying about raising the minimum wage – that it will destroy jobs, in this case up to one million jobs, dealing a devastating blow to the very people that need help most in the Obama economy,” one Senate GOP aide said.
The CBO report offered an analysis on what would happen if the minimum wage was raised to $10.10 per hour, as advocated by President Obama and congressional Democrats.
It found the wage hike would cost 500,000 jobs by 2016, but also that it would lift 900,000 people out of poverty by increasing incomes.
Senate Democrats say they are going forward with a likely March or early April vote on raising the wage.
In the House, Democrats are moving forward as soon as next week with the rollout of a discharge petition that would seek to force a vote in the lower chamber.
The discharge petition has the backing of about 190 of the 200-member Democratic caucus, aides say.
“We obviously hope it will win enough Republicans to pass,” the leadership aide added. “If they don’t pass it, then good policy is always good politics.”
Translation: We know it won’t pass but we’re gonna put it out there anyway because polling supposedly indicates most people are “for it” and we desperately need a “winning” issue that will lift us over the Obamacare hump – in spite of the fact that up to a million people could lose their jobs if the bill did somehow pass.
Just another shameless attempt at the left trying to buy votes from vulnerable, gullible citizens in a critical election year because they don’t have anything else to run on. Anyone surprised?