The Minimum Wage Debate

1637 WordsJan 27, 20187 Pages
The minimum wage debate brings about a range of reactions from different people. There are those who believe that there shouldn’t even be a minimum wage and that wages should be determined by the markets. On the other hand, we have those who vigorously argue for increasing the wage minimum citing inflation, the poverty line and worker productivity. Regardless, we do have a federal minimum wage rate in the United States at $7.25 per hour, with some states having a higher minimum wage than the federal minimum. President Obama, in his first state of the union address of his second term proposed “Tonight, let’s declare that, in the wealthiest nation on Earth, no one who works full-time should have to live in poverty, and raise the federal minimum wage to $9 an hour” (The White House 2013). A year later, he has revised that number to $10.10 per hour after signing an executive order that has already raised the minimum wage for federal workers to that number. (The White House 2014). With more and more states raising their own minimum wage, a minimum wage increase seems almost imminent with Democrats and Republicans getting closer to a deal. (Bolton 2014). But we are more interested in the efficiency of a minimum wage implemented at the federal level. The main question that surrounds this debate is whether this price floor in labor markets is efficient given that the stated goal of the minimum wage is to make sure full-time workers earn a living wage and are above the poverty line.
Open Document