Thursday, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi stated that the latest COVID-relief bill that is soon to be sent to the Senate would include a $15 minimum wage requirement.
Pelosi said that the House of Representatives plan to have the COVID-relief bill wrapped up by the end of February and confirmed that the legislation would increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour.
During her press conference, Pelosi said, “We hope to finish our markups in committee this week and then send it to the Budget Committee next week for them to work their will on it. Then to the Rules Committee and then to the floor. And we hope to have this all done by the end of February.”
Pelosi also set the timeline as to when the bill would arrive on President Joe Biden’s desk, adding, “Certainly on the President’s desk in time to offset the March 14th deadline where some unemployment benefits will expire.”
When asked about the addition of the $15 minimum wage to the House bill, she confirmed that it would be included stating that they “We’re very proud of that…We will be sending that.”
However, not all Democrat’s support the wage hike. Democrat Senator Joe Machin from West Virginia came out in opposition to the proposed $15 minimum wage, stating that he was not in favor of it and was instead supportive of “having something that’s responsible and reasonable.”
According to the Daily Caller News Foundation, if Manchin opposed the coronavirus package with the addition of the $15 minimum wage and no Republican Senators supported the legislation, the relief package would temporarily be roadblocked.
In 2019 the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released a study showing that the House Democrats’ desire to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour would have devastating consequences. The wage hike would most likely kill 1.3 million American jobs by 2025.
More recently, the CBO increased the estimate of the average number of American jobs that would be lost to 1.4 million. The CBO analysis also predicted that a $15 per hour federal minimum wage would increase the cumulative budget deficit by $54 billion.
Currently, the federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour.