[Senator John] Thune [R, South Dakota] cited a Bloomberg poll showing 57 percent of the public views the potential loss of 500,000 jobs, a figure projected by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), as an unacceptable tradeoff for raising the minimum wage to a $10.10 hourly rate. The CBO dealt a huge blow to the legislation, the centerpiece of the Democrats’ 2014 agenda, when it warned in February of its impact on jobs.
…it’s because Harry Reid screwed up. His policy of shutting out the opposition on anything that was even vaguely politically relevant has blown up in his face; the GOP probably would have signed off on something suitably ‘bipartisan,’ but Reid didn’t want to do that. Now he’s in a situation where the Senate Majority Leader has to fall back on the filibuster to avoid an up-or-down vote, because based on my impromptu assessment of the situation it’s not entirely clear that Reid even has 51 votes for passage. In fact, I suspect that he doesn’t.
Seriously, in this economy it’s a bad thing when your legislation can be linked to anything that looks like a job-killer. There’s a reason why Democrats are being counseled to avoid the R-word: it’s because nobody actually thinks that we’re in a recovery, so nobody wants to hear about anything that assumes that we are. This has implications for everything, by the way: until we see real economic growth AND a rise in the labor participation rate politicians would be well-advised to keep everything in terms of jobs, jobs, jobs. The Democrats, of course, won’t – they’re in that stage of a bad election cycle where you blindly mash the buttons and hope something works – but they’re still be well-advised to advocate actual job-growth policies instead of job-killing ones.
Moe Lane (crosspost)
PS: Remember: the Democrats have already half-killed the filibuster. The only thing stopping them from going the rest of the distance is them themselves. Put another way: the Democrats may say that they want a minimum wage increase, but they’re adamantly refusing to do anything real to get it.