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Sanders’ Wage Hike Plan: A Poverty Reduction Mirage at the Cost of 700,000 Jobs

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Clear Facts

  • Sen. Bernie Sanders’ minimum wage proposal would reduce the number of impoverished people by 400,000 but cause a loss of 700,000 jobs, according to a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) analysis.
  • The plan would gradually increase the minimum wage to $17 per hour by 2029, affecting 8.9 million workers who currently earn less than that amount.
  • The proposal would also increase the budget deficit by nearly $60 billion over the next decade.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has proposed a minimum wage bill that, while projected to lift 400,000 people out of poverty, would also result in the loss of 700,000 jobs, according to an analysis by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). Introduced in May, Sanders’ plan would gradually increase the minimum wage until it reaches $17 per hour by 2029.

The CBO analysis indicates that this wage hike would lead to a 0.4% reduction in the total U.S. workforce. While the plan would help to alleviate poverty, the forced increase in wages would lead employers to cut approximately 700,000 jobs across the economy.

The CBO report states, “In an average week in 2029, the year when the minimum wage would reach $17 per hour, 8.9 million workers whose wages would otherwise be below $17 per hour would be directly affected; many of the 9.7 million workers whose wages would otherwise be slightly above that wage rate would also be affected.”

Despite its ambitious goals, the proposal has little chance of passing in the current Congress. Moreover, it would result in higher budget deficits, increasing the deficit by nearly $60 billion over the next decade.

The federal minimum wage, which was last increased in 2009, currently stands at $7.25 per hour. Sanders has long advocated for a $15 federal minimum wage, but given the current high inflation, he now believes $17 to be a more appropriate floor.

Advocates for a higher minimum wage argue that the current federal threshold is so low that it results in poverty for many families. The Economic Policy Institute reports that the federal minimum wage has lost nearly 30% of its purchasing power since it was last raised in 2009.

However, critics of minimum wage increases contend that they reduce employment, particularly among lower-skill workers, and contribute to inflation.

Clear Thoughts (op-ed)

Sen. Bernie Sanders’ proposed minimum wage hike is a classic case of misguided intentions.

While the promise of reducing poverty by 400,000 sounds appealing, we must also consider the 700,000 jobs that would vanish, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

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Raising the minimum wage to $17 per hour by 2029 would undoubtedly benefit some, but it would also harm many others.

Moreover, this policy would add nearly $60 billion to our already bloated budget deficit.

The idea of artificially boosting wages is enticing, but we must not ignore the potential downsides.

Let’s focus on creating more jobs and reducing the deficit, rather than implementing policies that could lead to job losses and exacerbate our fiscal situation.

Let us know what you think, please share your thoughts in the comments below.

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9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. rebel

    December 26, 2023 at 7:46 am

    sanders nis an idiot. how many businesses are going to have to close down because they can’t pay a 17.00 per hr wage or the employees who are goint to be laid off because the business can’t afford them or the average american who is going to have to pay higher prices for goods to cover this wage hike. only rich elites can come up with crazy ideas like this because it doesn’t effect them. what a moron!!!LGB!!1

    • Gorillaboy

      December 26, 2023 at 9:00 am

      Where do they think their authority comes from? Ridiculous!

      • Colby Goodson

        December 27, 2023 at 7:12 am

        So the cart boy and greeter a wal-mart would make the same as a roofer sacrificing his or her life?

  2. Bobby

    December 26, 2023 at 9:47 am

    Not very many places I know of pays $7.25 an hour now. Most start at $11.00 or $12.00 and give raises if you stay around and are decent help. This could hurt low income workers in another way too. Unless they raise the income limits on the Food Stamp requirements it could kick them off assistance. Most of low income are on food stamp assistance.
    That same hamburger meal I used to get when Biden first took office, $10.20 is now $14.80. I guess it’d be 19.00 after this raise even if inflation goes to Zero . I don’t think inflation is going to zero anytime soon.
    I guess my stopping at drive thrus are over it looks like !

  3. Colleen

    December 26, 2023 at 1:36 pm

    Bernie is nothing more than a socialist commie who loves Russia and wants to turn our country into his little fantasy. Bernie is a rich SOB, who want everybody in the bread lines and on welfare. Got to keep your people poor and braindead to the fact that they’re poor.

  4. Go Woke Go Broke sanders the hater

    December 26, 2023 at 2:26 pm

    So socialist America hate sanders why don’t you go back in your fking hole where you belong it’s morons like you in the government who are screwing over All Americans you fking idiot helping only 400,000 is not the answer but you would most defiantly be destroying 700,000 jobs you freak of nature get out of politics and join the human race and walk a mile in every hard working everydays Americans shoes then you’ll shut your fking pie hole you and that twit fake pocohantas warren to leftist know nothing losers get a real job first before you Spout Stupid go Woke Go Broke moron sanders! The moron voters who keep election socialist hater sanders stop voting for this vermin whose trying to destroy the everyday American worker whom he HATES he is not the working man’s friend you idiots in Verfment the brain vermont!

  5. Bopper

    December 26, 2023 at 10:23 pm

    Minimum wage jobs are not for a life career, they are jobs for students or retirees. Anyone who thinks a job at Burger King or McDonalds is a life time career goal is a fool! It’s well past the time where kids and their parents should stop with the false dream that a college degree is needed for a well paying career, the smart money is in construction, plumbing, electrician, carpenter and other skilled blue collar jobs. The college people who don’t know how to change a faucet washer will pay $45. to have you come to the house and do it!

  6. Centurion

    December 27, 2023 at 8:33 pm

    Just watch kommiefornia. Gruesome Newscum just signed a bill raising the state minimum wage from $15.50 to $20.00 per hour. $5.00 increase is too much for businesses to absorb. Fast food companies will convert to a vending machine style of inhouse food delivery. The cost of Grubhub, Uber Eats, etc. deliveries will skyrocket. There will NOT be anymore “Have It Your Way.”

  7. marion tinsley

    March 1, 2024 at 10:37 am

    bernie sanders is a socialist millionaire with 3 mansion in 3 differ states!how can that be?

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