The federal minimum wage has been stuck at $7.25 an hour since July 24, 2009â€”for eight years. Thanks to Republicans in Congress and the White House, it wonâ€™t be going up any time soon, and though many states have raised their minimum wages, 21 states remain stuck at $7.25 an hour. Thatâ€™s a poverty wage. AÂ new analysis from the National Employment Law ProjectÂ shows what the Democratsâ€™ Raise the Wage Act of 2017â€”which would take the minimum wage up to $15 by 2024, a gradual raise by any standard except the Republican â€śno raise everâ€ť standardâ€”would do for low-wage workers:
- 20.7 million workers would see pay raises in the 21 states whose minimum wages are stuck at $7.25.
- Fully half of the 41.5 million workers who would see pay increases are in the 21 states stuck at $7.25.
- In the 13 other states with minimum wages of less than $9, nearly 13 million more workers also would see their hourly pay rise.
- Of all the workers nationwide who would receive raises, 8 in 10 are in the 34 states with the lowest minimum wages.
- In 19 of the 21 states at $7.25, more than 30 percent of wage-earners would benefit from raising the federal minimum wage to $15 by 2024; the highest share is inÂ Mississippi,Â with 44.4 percent.
Republicans want these workers stuck at poverty wages. Thereâ€™s no other serious explanation for their refusal to raise the minimum wage over the past eight years.