Obama to push for minimum wage hike in Ann Arbor on Wednesday


US_NEWS_OBAMA_1_DE
President Barack Obama talks to a crowd of 3,000 about the price and worth of a college education at the field house on the campus of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Friday, January 27, 2012. (Eric Seals/Detroit Free Press/MCT)

President Barack Obama will visit Ann Arbor on Wednesday as part of his nationwide push for an increase in the federal minimum wage.

The White House announced the event Friday, but it is still unclear when or where Obama will speak.

The president will argue for increasing the federal minimum wage to $10.10 per hour, more than the current $7.25 per hour and Michigan's $7.40 minimum wage. Obama signed an executive order earlier this year raising the minimum wage for federal contractors to $10.10.

He has been pushing for a raise as part of his "year of action" he kicked off in his 2014 State of the Union address, in which he blamed congressional inaction for a variety of issues on Republicans. The president vowed to work within the parameters of executive action to push various initiatives into law.

"Even though a majority of Democrats, Independents and Republicans across the country support raising the minimum wage, Republicans in Congress don't want to give it a vote," Obama said last month in a radio address. "Only Congress can finish the job."

Minimum wage has been a major issue for both parties as they prepare for the November midterm elections. A February Congressional Budget Office report found raising the minimum wage would bring 900,000 people out of poverty, while also eliminating about 500,000 jobs.

"This report confirms what we've long known: While helping some, mandating higher wages has real costs, including fewer people working," said Brendan Buck, press secretary for House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio.

Wednesday will be Obama's second trip to Michigan this year, following last month's visit to Lansing to sign the farm bill.


Comments powered by Disqus

Please note All comments are eligible for publication in Central Michigan Life.