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The United States Senate on Friday rejected an attempt by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour, with a number of Democrats opposing the measure.
Seven Democrats and one independent senator who caucuses with the Democrats opposed the minimum wage increase. Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Tom Carper (D-Del.), and Angus King (I-Maine.) voted with Republicans on a procedural point of order that prevented Sanders' proposal from being added to the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 spending bill.
The minimum wage increase was not likely to pass the 50-50 Senate given Sen. Joe Manchin's opposition to a $15 per hour minimum wage. He prefers instead to adopt an $11 per hour minimum wage indexed to increase with inflation.
Complicating matters for Democrats was a ruling from the Senate parliamentarian last week that including a provision to raise the minimum wage in the COVID-19 spending bill would violate the budget reconciliation rules. Democrats invoked budget reconciliation to pass the bill because Republicans do not support several provisions amounting to nearly $1 trillion of spending they say is not related to coronavirus relief.
Under budget reconciliation, Republicans will not be able to filibuster, lowering the threshold needed to pass the bill from 60 to just a simple majority. If the minimum wage increase were included with the COVID-19 relief bill, budget reconciliation would not apply and Democrats would not be able to pass it.
Did Sinema really have vote against a $15 minimum wage for 24 million people like this? https://t.co/Jv0UXLKLHI— Sawyer Hackett (@Sawyer Hackett) 1614971844.0
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