President Obama assailed Republicans in Congress for opposing a minimum wage hike, as lawmakers return to Washington next week after a two-week recess.
In his weekly address on Saturday, the president highlighted two restaurant owners who have chosen to raise their employees’ salaries to $10 per hour, which is both “the right thing to do” and “good business sense,” Obama said.
“While not all of us always see eye to eye politically, one thing we overwhelmingly agree on is that nobody who works full-time should ever have to live in poverty,” he said.
“That’s why nearly three in four Americans support raising the minimum wage. The problem is, Republicans in Congress don’t support raising the minimum wage. Some even want to get rid of it entirely.”
Since his State of the Union address earlier this year, Obama has been pressing Congress to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour, a level that supporters say would help struggling families pay their bills.
The president has tried to act unilaterally through an executive order calling for employees on new federal contracts to be paid at least $10.10 per hour, but he said that it’s time for Congress to step in.