President Obama tore into Senate Republicans for blocking a bill that would raise the minimum wage, while painting a picture of a GOP that doesn’t care about working people.
Some of them want to scrap the minimum wage entirely. One House Republican said, it’s outlived its usefulness. I’d vote to repeal the minimum wage. A Senate Republican said, he doesn’t think the minimum wage helps the middle class. This is a very simple issue. Either you are in favor or raising wages for hard working Americans, or you’re not. Either you want to grow the economy from the middle out and the bottom up, so that prosperity is broad based, or you think that top down economics is the way to go.
Republicans in Congress have found the time to vote more than 50 times to undermine or repeal the healthcare bill for millions of working families. Earlier this month they voted for a budget that would give the wealthiest Americans a massive tax cut, while forcing deep cuts to investments that help middle class families, but they won’t raise wages for millions of working families when three quarters of Americans support it? It makes no sense.
And on top of that, they blocked our efforts to make sure women receive equal pay for equal work. They stood in the way as we fought to extend unemployment insurance for parents who need a little help supporting their families while they’re out looking for work. Republicans have failed to dismantle the Affordable Care Act, and they’ve increasing failed to do anything when it comes to helping people who work hard get ahead.
If there’s any good news here, it’s that Republicans in Congress don’t get the last word on this issue, or any issue. You do. The American people. The voters. Change is happening, whether Republicans in Congress like it or not. So my message to the American people is this, do not get discouraged by a vote like the one we saw this morning. Get fired up. Get organized. Make your voices heard, and rest assured, I’m going to keep working with you, and Leader Nancy Pelosi, and other members of Congress who are here today to raise wages for hard working Americans. It’s the right thing to do.
If you’re member of Congress doesn’t support raising the minimum wage, you gotta let them know that they’re out of step, and if they keep putting politics ahead of working Americans, you’ll put them out of office.
The president didn’t just offer a critique of the Republican refusal to raise the minimum wage. He connected the dots, and showed how today’s vote fits the larger Republican agenda. Republicans want to deny working people access to affordable healthcare. If you lose your job, Republicans don’t want you to collect unemployment benefits. Republicans don’t want women to be paid the same amount as men, and they definitely don’t want working people to earn higher wages.
The Republican agenda is of the rich, by the rich, for the rich. They don’t care about anyone who isn’t rich. Everyone who isn’t wealthy is taker, who is leeching off of the makers. This is the way that Republicans in Congress view the nation.
Senate Republicans played into Democratic hands by blocking the minimum wage bill. They are revealing their true colors to the voters. With each vote against things like equal pay and the minimum wage, Republicans are sowing the seeds of their own demise.
President Obama isn’t just ripping Republicans. He is setting the stage for an epic debate about the future direction of our country.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor, who is White House Press Pool, and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association