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America's Minimum Wage Showdown46:45Download

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With guest host Anthony Brooks.

While some states raise the minimum wage, Missouri’s rolling it back. We’ll dive into the nation’s wage battle.

A woman shouts while marching with service workers asking for $15 minimum wage pay during a rally at Newark Liberty International Airport, Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016, in Newark, N.J. The event was part of the National Day of Action to Fight for $15. (Julio Cortez/AP)
A woman shouts while marching with service workers asking for $15 minimum wage pay during a rally at Newark Liberty International Airport, Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016, in Newark, N.J. The event was part of the National Day of Action to Fight for $15. (Julio Cortez/AP)

In the fight to help working families, advocates point out that if you work full-time at minimum wage you’re stuck below the poverty line. So some cities have given low-wage workers a raise, while progressives push for a hike in the federal minimum wage. But when St. Louis raised it to ten dollars an hour, Missouri became the latest Republican-controlled state to pass a law rolling it back. So much for local control. This hour On Point: a push for a lower minimum wage. -- Anthony Brooks

Guests

Ben Casselman, senior editor and the chief economics writer for FiveThirtyEight. (@bencasselman)

Ed Brock, third-generation owner of Johnnie Brock’s Dungeon Party Warehouse costume store.

Salim Furth, research fellow in macroeconomics at the Heritage Foundation. (@salimfurth)

Michael Reich, professor of economics and co-chair of the Center on Wage and Employment Dynamics at the University of California, Berkeley.

From The Reading List

St. Louis Post-Dispatch: St. Louis $10 minimum wage will revert back to $7.70 in August, Greitens announces — "The minimum wage in St. Louis will revert to $7.70 an hour on Aug. 28, with Gov. Eric Greitens announcing on Friday that he will allow a bill blocking the city’s increase to become law without his signature. When the Legislature sends the governor a bill, he has several options. He can sign it, veto it or take the middle course — without action before a constitutional deadline, the bill automatically takes effect."

FiveThirtyEight: Seattle’s Minimum Wage Hike May Have Gone Too Far — "In January 2016, Seattle’s minimum wage jumped from $11 an hour to $13 for large employers, the second big increase in less than a year. New research released Monday by a team of economists at the University of Washington suggests the wage hike may have come at a significant cost: The increase led to steep declines in employment for low-wage workers, and a drop in hours for those who kept their jobs. Crucially, the negative impact of lost jobs and hours more than offset the benefits of higher wages — on average, low-wage workers earned $125 per month less because of the higher wage, a small but significant decline."

Washington Post: Maine tried to raise its minimum wage. Restaurant workers didn’t want it. — "As the Maine House voted on a bill to reduce the minimum wage for tipped restaurant workers, Jason Buckwalter and a dozen fellow servers huddled in a back room listening to the vote call at the Bangor steakhouse where they work. They all hoped to hear one thing: that state legislators had voted to lower their wages. Some cried with relief, Buckwalter said, when the final vote ended at 110 to 37 — overwhelmingly in their favor."

This program aired on July 10, 2017.

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