Pelosi Ignores Senate Rules, Vows to Include $15 Minimum Wage in Relief Bill
Senate parliamentarian say it would not pass under Senate rules.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced Democrats would vote to include a provision to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour in the new COVID-19 relief bill, despite the Senate parliamentarian announcing it would not pass under Senate rules.
Pelosi said in a statement on Thursday:
“The ruling from the Senate parliamentarian is disappointing because raising the minimum wage would give 27 million Americans a well-deserved raise and pull nearly one million Americans out of poverty in the middle of a once-in-a-century devastating pandemic and economic crisis."
“House Democrats believe that the minimum wage hike is necessary.
"Therefore, this provision will remain in the American Rescue Plan on the floor tomorrow."
"Democrats in the House are determined to pursue every possible path in the Fight For 15,” she added.
Lawmakers are now preparing to vote on Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief plan.
But the Senate parliamentarian, Elizabeth MacDonough, informed members of the Senate their $15 minimum wage hike went against the reconciliation process's rules.
The Senate can pass filibuster-proof legislation with only 51 votes, but the legislation provisions must be related to the budget and cannot have a merely incidental effect on it.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki acknowledged the decision in a statement:
“President Biden is disappointed in this outcome, as he proposed having the $15 minimum wage as part of the American Rescue Plan.
"He respects the parliamentarian’s decision and the Senate’s process."
"He will work with leaders in Congress to determine the best path forward because no one in this country should work full time and live in poverty."
"He urges Congress to move quickly to pass the American Rescue Plan, which includes $1,400 rescue checks for most Americans, funding to get this virus under control, aid to get our schools reopened, and desperately needed help for the people who have been hardest hit by this crisis.”
Biden previously admitted that he did not believe the $15 minimum wage hike would pass in under reconciliation rules, Politico reported.
Neon Nettle reported that the $15 minimum wage hike could hit families the hardest by sending childcare costs skyrocketing.
Biden's administration is selling a hike in wages as a way to lift Americans out of poverty as many are left struggling through the pandemic.
Economic experts are warning that the move is more likely to break the economy and spread more misery.
“Childcare costs would increase by an average of 21 percent — an extra $3,728 per year for two children — and up to 43 percent, or more than $6,000, in some states,” Grezler warned in a recent report published by the foundation.