Would raising the minimum wage help lift women out of poverty?
That is what the White House aimed to prove with a study released on Wednesday, which argues hiking the federal standard of $7.25 an hour to $10.10 an hour would bolster the economy and narrow the gender pay gap.
According to the White House, “2.8 million working single parents would benefit from the President’s proposed increase in the full minimum wage, more than 80 percent of whom are women.”
“Increasing the minimum wage can also help women work their way out of poverty and into the middle class,” the study adds.
By bumping up the pay of low-skill female workers, notes the report, America would “make progress toward closing the gender pay gap.”
All raising the minimum wage is going to do is keep women at home, counters Aloysius Hogan, a senior research fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute.
“There are jobs that are going to be lost and it’s the women who will be losing them,” he told The Daily Caller News Foundation.
Hogan continued, “Who is losing out by increasing the minimum wage? It is the lower wage workers. And who are they losing out to? The unionized higher skilled workers.”
He explained that employers will find it more efficient to pay fewer workers with higher skills at the higher wages.
But without significant wage pressures, employers can afford to hire both skilled and unskilled workers, said Hogan.
Referring to a study that revealed the gender pay gap that exists in the White House, Hogan commented, “This is all a huge attempt to deflect from the reality of what they practice and the reality of what they preach because they are disproportionally going to hurt women and put them out of jobs.”
Wisconsin Republican Rep. Paul Ryan made a similar point.
“What we want is more people to enter the workforce. We don’t want to make it more expensive for employers to hire people,” Ryan told a CNBC reporter.
He continued, “We want everybody to make more money, but more importantly with these horrible labor force participation rates, what matters most is getting people into the workforce — then getting the skills and the economic growth that allows them to get a better paying job.”
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