Wednesday, October 6, 2010

You Couldn't Live On It

That's my message to Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele tonight.
Perhaps it's all he needs to know about minimum wage. 

In case you didn't know, your local Tea Party movement is backing candidates running for spots on the national policy-making stage who favor eliminating federally mandated minimum wage. (FYI: 90% of the world's countries have minimum wage law). 

So, last night MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell tried to find out if the GOP Chairman is on board with candidates who think that way. Here's what happened:

Of course Michael Steele doesn't know minimum wage is $7.25 an hour.

He makes $107.21 an hour! And this is just his base pay for heading up the Republican National Committee.  He reportedly earns another $8K-$20K whenever he makes an appearance or delivers a speech.

That hourly rate adds up to $223,000 a year.

On the other hand, a person making minimum wage who is lucky enough to work 40 hours a week makes $15,000 a year.  The minimum wage earner who is only scheduled for 30 hours a week (so his/her employer doesn't have to offer benefits) makes just $11,300 a year. 

Do you know anyone trying to live on $7.25 an hour, Mr. Steele? I'm betting not.

Same for this guy...

Tonight,  Newt Gingrich declared the GOP is the "party of paychecks"...(which seems funny since GOP leadership has no idea how much pay to put in checks).  Even so, Gingrich is stumping for Republican candidates with this good guy/bad guy mantra:  Republicans are the party of paychecks.  Democrats are the party of food stamps.

And this is supposed to make people run away from Democrats?

The case could be made that Democrats at least seem to know that $15K a year is not enough income to put food on a table.

I won't even bother to pitch the case that the GOP is the party that made the economic mess we're in right now.  But I would like to suggest that people who don't have a clue what they're paying their housekeepers, their gardeners, the guy making their coffee, the woman ironing their shirts...

These are not the people who should be allowed to decide whether or not minimum wage legislation is important. 

I hope Main Street is paying attention.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Two people are on the wrong sides of two bridges in dangerous disrepair. The must cross to carry their child to life saving aid but there are no resources on their side of their bridges that would allow them to make they cross anyway. Remarkably both make it without injury to themselves or their children. One of them collects repair materials and goes back to fix the bridge so his neighbors can cross safely in the future. One does not.

Which person do we want to emulate?

- DC