Remember back when an up or down vote was the most important thing in Washington?
Evidently some issues are more important than others:
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Republican-controlled Senate smothered a proposed election-year increase in the minimum wage Wednesday, rejecting Democratic claims that it was past time to boost the $5.15 hourly pay floor that has been in effect for nearly a decade.
The 52-46 vote was eight short of the 60 needed for approval and came one day after House Republican leaders made clear they do not intend to allow a vote on the issue, fearing it might pass. (empahasis added)
That's some two-party system we got going there, innit?
And evidently inflation only counts when you're talking about corporate interests:
Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyoming, chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, offered an alternative that proposed a minimum wage increase of $1.10 over 18 months, in two steps.
The increase was coupled with a variety of provisions offering regulatory or tax relief to small businesses, including one to exempt enterprises with less than $1 million in annual receipts from the federal wage and hour law entirely. The current exemption level is $500,000, and a Republican document noted the amount had "lagged behind inflation."
God forbid the exemption "lag behind inflation"! Of course, considering that the minimum wage has also been "lagging behind inflation" for years, but after all, it's not like THAT affects anyone, right?
And I love the justification from House Majority Leader John Boehner for not allowing a vote on the bill:
Pressed by reporters, he said, "There are limits to my willingness to just throw anything out on the floor."
- Vote description: Expressing the Sense of the House of Representatives That a National Young Sports Week Should Be Established
- Vote description: Broadcast Decency Enforcement Act
- Vote description: Condemning the Unauthorized, Inappropriate, and Coerced Ordination of Catholic Bishops by the People’S Republic of China
- Vote description: Supporting Responsible Fatherhood, Promoting Marriage, and Encouraging Greater Involvement of Fathers in the Lives of Their Children, Especially on Father’S Day
- Vote description: To Designate the Facility of the United States Postal Service Located at 217 Southeast 2nd Street in Dimmitt, Texas, As the “Sergeant Jacob Dan Dones Post Office”
Gotta have your priorities, after all.