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Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

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Raising the minimum wage would not only reduce the number of Americans who work full-time and still qualify for public assistance, it could also decrease violence. Wages have stagnated for decades while incomes have exploded for the top 1 percent who have taken in 95 percent of the gains of the mild recovery from the Great Recession.

Republicans who oppose President Obama’s call to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $9.00 an hour make the argument that raising it kills jobs, though research often argues the opposite.

“Rigorous empirical studies do not show that increasing the minimum wage by an amount such as this will lead to an increase in unemployment of such workers,” writes economist Frank J. Lysy.

Proponents of the current wage level benefit from the mistaken perception that most Americans who earn the lowest possible wages are part-timers; teenagers looking for pocket money. The graphic from the Economic Policy Institute above busts those myths, pointing out that 88 percent of those who earn minimum wage aren’t teenagers: A majority work full-time and earn at least half of their family’s income.

“Full-time workers in minimum-wage jobs are poor, despite their evident willingness to work,” Lysy notes. “Even if the minimum wage is raised to $9.00 an hour from the current $7.25 an hour, as Obama has proposed, these working poor will still be earning well less than poverty-line income. And bringing the minimum wage to $9.00 an hour will only bring it back to where it was more than a half-century ago. Real GDP per capita has more than doubled over this period.  Yet minimum-wage workers are currently earning 20 percent less.”

Image: Economic Policy Institute 

Democratic nominee Joe Biden speaking in Manitowoc, WI

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Today in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, Joe Biden spoke about the toll of coronavirus, which has now officially passed 200,000. "What worries me now is we've been living with this pandemic for so long, I worry we're risking becoming numb to the toll that it's taken on us," the Democratic nominee warned. "We can't let that happen."

How did that happen? How did America lose 200,000 people to a horrendous death, with no end in sight? That tragedy can be traced directly to a vacuum of leadership in the White House, as Biden remarked. But he also saw behind that lack of presidential fortitude to its deeper cause: Donald Trump simply never cared how many of us die and he still doesn't. The evidence is in Trump's own behavior at his "superspreader rallies" – where he always protects himself while leaving his own followers to risk illness and worse.

Watch Biden describe the moral emptiness inside this president.