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GOP House Candidate Breaks With Party, Pushes For Minimum Wage Hike

Memo Pad Politics

GOP House Candidate Breaks With Party, Pushes For Minimum Wage Hike


David Jolly, the Republican candidate in the special election for the U.S. House in Florida’s 13th congressional district, broke with the caucus he hopes to join this week when he announced his support for raising the federal minimum wage.

The Harkin-Miller bill to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 has become a key issue in the campaign; Jolly opposes the bill, while Democratic candidate Alex Sink supports it. While Jolly opposes the legislation, however, he’s now making it clear that he endorses a general principle that would amount to a substantial minimum wage increase.

Jolly explained his stance on raising the minimum wage to The St. Petersburg Tribune this week.

“Minimum wage should be indexed to inflation or subject to a cost-of-living adjustment like any other federal income program…” Jolly said. “That means some years it may go up, other years it may stay static. Barack Obama is not an economist, neither is the Congress.”

Were the minimum wage indexed to inflation, as Jolly proposes, it would currently stand at $10.50 per hour.

If Jolly actually does support this approach, it’s unclear why he opposes the Harkin-Miller bill, given that it would raise the minium wage to $10.10 per hour in three increments of 95 cents, then index it to inflation thereafter.

In any case, the fact that Jolly is publicly supporting what amounts to an immediate $3.25 per hour minimum-wage hike sends a strong signal about the issue’s political potency. It’s not hard to understand the political value of Jolly’s position; according to a recent Quinnipiac poll, Floridians support raising the minimum wage by an overwhelming 73 to 24 percent margin.

National Republicans will surely be paying close attention to the political impact of Jolly’s break with the national party. Florida’s 13th district is widely considered to be a bellwether — President Obama won it with just 50.1 percent of the vote in 2012 — so as Democrats prepare to make the minimum wage a centerpiece of their midterm election strategy, a Jolly victory in the March 11 special election could spur other Republican candidates to speak out in favor of a raise.

Screenshot: YouTube

Henry Decker

Henry Decker was formerly the Managing Editor of The National Memo. He is currently an Online Associate at MRCampaigns.

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  1. Sand_Cat February 4, 2014

    Yeah, he supports the idea, but opposes the bill to do it.
    What a surprise.

  2. Budjob February 5, 2014

    The minimum wage should have been ten dollars per hour fifteen years ago!!!

    1. dawn shafer simmons February 5, 2014

      according to who? raise mininum wage and everyting else goes up to support it…stupid idea…for a non trained anything..semms a little high to me…

      1. Budjob February 5, 2014

        Let me inform you of something Dawn.The name of the game in this fucked up country is GREED,plain and simple,and by Goddammit it’s time the poor and lower middle class got theirs!!! I VOLUNTEERED three years of my life because I thought this country had principles.But,all they gave every little man and WOMAN was a royal fucki job.

        1. dawn shafer simmons February 5, 2014

          please know that I am in agreement with you on that..however I still do not think a $10.10 min wage increase to fed employees is going t benefit you or me..they already have medical coverage etc.
          something drastic has to happen soon as we are all going down the tube

          1. jmprint February 5, 2014

            Dawn it’s a start to encourage employers to bring up the minimum wage. I too have been an employer for over 33 years. Think about this, the oil companies raise the cost of gas per gallon every year due to speculation, that in turn makes inflation higher, but the oil companies DO NOT put their billions of profits back into the market they bank those profits oversees, now if the employee gets a raise they DO put their monies into the market they buy more in turn it stimulates the economy. The more they buy the more money the companies like yours and mine make, it’s that simple.

          2. Budjob February 6, 2014

            Dawn,perhaps a good starting point would be to hold a national referendum reducing the pay,benefits and entitlements that we the American taxpayer are forced to bequeath to our alleged representatives.What they receive to deceive,rape,and pillaqge us is egregious at the very least! A fifty percent reduction in pay,benefits,and pensions would be fantastic! Plus all of their dependents would have to buy their own health insurance.

          3. Bill February 6, 2014

            Your stupid comments only help this country go down the tubes faster, happy now?

      2. dpaano February 5, 2014

        Gee, Dawn, I think they figured that McDonald’s would have to raise their price on a Big Mac about 3 cents if they had to pay minimum wage…..that doesn’t seem like a big jump to me if I really wanted to buy a Big Mac!!! The costs of doing business would not rise as much as some of you seem to think….apparently, you are not economists!

    2. Robert Roberto February 5, 2014

      For people with 2 year Degrees 15 years ago I hope it was over 10 dollars an hour.

  3. Dee February 5, 2014

    No worries now that Walmart has been screeching that they have lost money due to the food stamps cuts Ive no doubt that Congress will now try and replace them after all we cant have Walmart starving now can we?

    1. jakenhyde February 5, 2014

      @Dee…pretty narrow view. Walmart isn’t the only company that gets hurt by the cuts to SNAP. All monies from SNAP go back into the economy….regardless of whether it’s Walmart, Safeway, or any other food outlet that legally accepts SNAP benefits.
      It’s one of the few government programs in which all outlays are returned to the general economy.

    2. dawn shafer simmons February 5, 2014

      many people depend on shopping at Wal-Mart as there prices are the lowest in town…get them unionized and we will never be able to afford to eat.

      1. gmccpa February 5, 2014

        Ironic…because as it stands now…Walmart employees cannot afford to eat.

        What you are missing…and what Walmart just found out, is that low income people immediately recycle their money back into the economy. And it benefits everyone…even a big corp such as themselves. Its no coincidence that the Countries with the highest paid employees have a higher standard of living. And the Countries with the lowest paid employees have some of the lowest standard of living. Is this not obvious to you?

      2. ralphkr February 5, 2014

        Really, Dawn, the only reason we can afford to eat is because WalMart does not pay a living wage? I guess I shall have to look at prices in WalMart more closely as I have found that I can buy name brand name items at Safeway, Costco, Albertsons, and QFC for less than I see the same items priced at WalMart and all those stores pay much higher wages than our local WalMart Superstores. The only thing that I have found less expensive at WalMart than elsewhere has been Reisen’s candy and most prescription drugs

      3. Budjob February 6, 2014

        Dawn all you are doing is supporting the Chinese economy.The Chinese Warehouse (AKA Wal-Mart) is responsible for helping to destroy the American economy.Last,but certainly not least they played a major role in the demise of the small business sector!

  4. Dominick Vila February 5, 2014

    The benefits of raising the minimum are a no brainer. In addition to helping those at the bottom of our financial spectrum, higher wages translate to higher spending, which is the key for a prosperous market, economic growth and job creation. Starving the beast may have been a good GOP strategy for a while, insisting on making the poor poorer, while protecting the interests of those who don’t need protection to enjoy the best life has to offer, is bound to hurt the GOP chances to get control of the Senate in 2014. That is, if Democrats don’t highlight the cynicism of their position, and people are so influenced by emotional subjects, that they are willing to vote against their own interests to elect people loyal only to their powerful donors.

    1. dawn shafer simmons February 5, 2014

      the wage increase is only for federal workers..what good does that do the overall American workforce???

      1. Robert Roberto February 5, 2014

        Contract workers.

      2. Dominick Vila February 5, 2014

        President Obama’s promise to raise the minimum wage – without congressional approval, which he does not need – to $10.10 is more symbolic than relevant. I was a government contractor for 40 years, and nobody was earning minimum wage by the time a retired. What does need Congressional approval is raising the minimum wage for everyone else, which the GOP has opposed up to now.

        1. dawn shafer simmons February 5, 2014

          I agree with the opposition..this across the board crap, don’t fly with me..I ‘ve been a boss 35 years now and the only people who get raises that work for me are the ones that have earned…I’m sick of this give it away society..

          1. dpaano February 5, 2014

            Dawn: As a “boss,” you should be smart enough to realize that the more money you pay your employees, the more money they have to spend on consumer goods. This HELPS the economy and keeps businesses in business providing these consumer goods. I find it hard to see why business owners, etc., just don’t seem to get that point!!! I guess it’s just too logical!

          2. Sandra Dennis February 6, 2014


            ☯☯☯ ☯☯�☯ ☯☯�☯☯ ☯☯☯and vote no on every liberal bill. Any way to stop Obama.

          3. Robert Roberto February 6, 2014


          4. Allan Richardson February 6, 2014

            It’s like merging into the surviving lane on the highway after reading the “left/right lane ends” sign. Common sense tells you that ALL the drivers will be able to merge more smoothly if everybody abandons the lane that is going away as soon as possible. But the SELFISH advantage of the ONE car that stays in the emptying lane all the way up to the front and “begs” to get over in front of those who have been waiting in line tempts us, and WE want to be the one who benefits by getting around the congestion. But since almost all the drivers have the SAME idea, there are too many “just ones” and this CAUSES the congestion. If everybody ELSE obeys the rules, it works out well for everybody, AND EVEN BETTER for the cheaters. But if too many cheat, it gets worse for EVERYBODY.

          5. dpaano February 7, 2014

            Allan: EXACTLY!!! You’ve hit on one of my pet peeves…..I’m one of those people who waits patiently for my turn, and it really pisses me off when people rush by me trying to get to the front of the line. And, as I said, if people don’t pay their employees a decent salary, they don’t have money to spend on consumer goods; therefore, production of consumer goods goes down, and more people are laid off. It’s a vicious circle to say the least!!! But, most “bosses” don’t seem to get the logic of it at all. Not sure how they became bosses when they are so short-sighted.

          6. Allan Richardson February 7, 2014

            I suspect they were either (a) promoted by higher level bosses who are also short-sighted, and were impressed by the way they improved the company’s bottom line TEMPORARILY, or (b) their grandfather left them the company and they are running it down and making Grandpa spin in his grave!

            The old 19th century robber barons were not the finest people morally, but they were NOT short-sighted. They were building companies that they hoped would be their monuments. Thanks to the musical chairs of publicly traded boards of directors and the MBA fallacy — that building a business is a technique that can be learned in college — most corporate leaders are setting THEMSELVES up for their next OFFER rather than setting the COMPANY up for the next CENTURY. Thus, they boost their current employer’s quarterly profits and stock price in order to be hired away for more money, but in the process, they sow the seeds of more trouble for the company they left behind. But they don’t CARE about the company they left behind, once they sell their shares of it for a profit.

            And obviously, they don’t care about the people — potential CUSTOMERS — they impoverish.

          7. Dominick Vila February 5, 2014

            Nobody is talking about giving away money. Paying livable wages to working people, that is consistent with their contributions and the cost of living in the areas where they live and work, is the right thing to do, and it is likely to help the economy as well as the average American.

  5. Gary Graves February 5, 2014

    Can you trust David Jolly? or will he be elected and then turn back to the Republican agenda? and vote no on every liberal bill. Any way to stop Obama.

    1. dawn shafer simmons February 5, 2014

      we hope he votes no on all the stupid ideas ‘Your President’
      comes up with…we are all in the poor house as it is

      1. dpaano February 5, 2014

        And, the reason is all the jobs that the GOP have cut everywhere and all the obstructions they’ve put up to keep people from working. Use your brain, Dawn, for a “boss,” you sure are uninformed. Just my opinion.

      2. jmprint February 5, 2014

        Do you remember when our president had a stupid idea of helping all employees by not having them pay their SS portion for a year, now tell me as an employers, didn’t that help your company also. (Oh I only called it a stupid idea to prove a point.)

  6. howa4x February 5, 2014

    Funny the republicans won’t close one tax loop hole for the upper ends of the economy but won’t support anything for the bottom. So it is really a reverse to Romney’s argument that people who get income on investments and carried interest which benefits no one but them selves are the makers and the majority of people that actually work every day for subsistence are the takers. Make you wonder what the hell he was talking about. A rise in the minimum wage will help low income communities expand and grow by infusing more cash into them. This is not government rebuilding our inner cites but rather it’s the private sector. Very republican don’t you think?

  7. dpaano February 5, 2014

    We need more of these moderate Republicans to get on the band wagon….apparently there are a few that see the light and I applaud them (but I’d never vote for them).

    1. jmprint February 5, 2014

      I don’t trust snake either.

  8. daniel bostdorf February 5, 2014

    Jolly is taking a center position on this issue to court the demographic he represents.

    The minimum wage or liveable wage concept, in reality, does nothing to alleviate those in poverty.

    A stinging article about this is here: $10 an hour, with no way out
    An 11-hour shift with a Baltimore security guard in Harbor East illuminates how low-wage work turns into a trap.

    Read here:


    We need to eliminate the minimum wage altogether and replace it, using the trillions of dollars spent in other social programs to create a guaranteed yearly income. This was proposed by both GOP and Democrats back in 1967…

    Let me outline the fallacy of even a $15 an hour job…..

    Lets take a $15/hour “livable wage” scenario: (which it isn’t)

    $15/hour is $420 a week 28 hours part time. $21840 yearly .

    Still poverty level.
    $15/hour full time is $600 a week/ $31200 yearly. Still near or at poverty if you consider family size.

    Federal poverty guidelines here:

    Therefore….the “minimum wage or livable wage” should be replaced with a guaranteed yearly income based upon Federal poverty statistics by state.

    Jolly is playing to the crowd. The real issue is eliminating poverty once and for all…and the GOP right, left, center doesn’t care about that at all…..and Democrats. too, can’t see above their demographic too..

    “Overcoming poverty is not a task of charity, it is an act of justice. Like Slavery and Apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome and eradicated by the actions of human beings. Sometimes it falls on a generation to be great. YOU can be that great generation. Let your greatness blossom.” ……Nelson Mandela

  9. 1standlastword February 11, 2014

    Wow! Fear is a strong motivator. This fellow is polling in a dead heat and stands to loose a seat Rs have held for 58 years.
    He’s campaigning and that means he’s lying


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