Dem Senate Candidate: $50 Minimum Wage, $100K Living Wage in CA

During the California Senate primary debate on Tuesday night, Democratic Representative Barbara Lee remained resolute in her advocacy for a $50 minimum wage, despite facing scrutiny on the issue.

Addressed directly about her stance on the $50 minimum wage, Lee defended her position, emphasizing the pressing need to address the exorbitant cost of living in California. She stood firm on her previous call to increase the minimum wage to $50, which equates to approximately $100,000 per year.

In response to the question posed on the debate stage, Lee underscored the urgency of tackling California’s affordability crisis, highlighting the excessively high cost of living. She emphasized the federal government’s responsibility to raise the minimum wage, noting that it hasn’t been increased in over a decade. Lee proposed a gradual raise to $17 by 2025 as a crucial initial step towards addressing the wage disparity and economic challenges faced by many Californians.

“But in California, for example we have $16 an hour now, and believe you me, every single study that you have seen that has been written about the affordability crisis in California, people working 2-3 jobs just to pay rent just to afford childcare we have to think about and talk about a living wage,” Lee went on. “What does that signify? receive a livable salary in California. individuals making over $100,000 in many places of California are just scraping by or living in extreme poverty, therefore we need to consider what it will take to ensure that individuals can afford to live in California. That amounts to a livable wage.

While on the campaign trail, Lee had previously called for a $50 minimum wage, which is seven times the federal minimum wage currently in place. This call drew criticism from those who contend that raising the minimum wage forces businesses to close or fire low-wage workers, whom those who support the increase are trying to assist.

Raising the federal minimum wage would boost salaries for some, but many low-paid workers would lose their employment in the long run, and it would have a detrimental impact on younger workers, according to a 2019 assessment by the Congressional Budget Office.

According to a 2021 Harvard Business Review study, employees’ pay actually decreases when the minimum wage is raised.

“I think they should actively pursue all the crazy ideas that they allegedly support, but at this point, far left politicians are so unwilling to listen to reason,” stated E.J. Antoni, a research fellow in regional economics at the Heritage Foundation’s Centre for Data Analysis, on Wednesday.

“Let’s increase the minimum wage to $500 instead of merely $50. The only way to make people realize how absurd these policies are now is to let them go into effect and then let them deal with the consequences.”

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