Republican Utah Sen. Mitt Romney and Democratic Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema have joined their efforts in crafting a new bill that would raise the federal minimum wage.
“We’re negotiating a minimum wage proposal which we would ultimately take to our group of 20 and see how they react to it and then go from there,” Romney told HuffPost in a piece published Wednesday, apparently alluding to a bipartisan group of centrist-minded lawmakers.
NEW: Mitt Romney and Kyrsten Sinema are teaming up on a bipartisan bill to increase the minimum wage.
— Igor Bobic (@igorbobic) April 14, 2021
Although the Utah senator refused to share more details on the prospective bill, Democratic West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin told HuffPost he thinks “it’s $11.”
A number of Senate Democrats and progressives including Democratic New York Sen. Chuck Schumer, Independent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Democratic Washington Sen. Patty Murray and Manchin are reportedly set to meet Wednesday to negotiate among themselves before moving forward with bipartisan initiatives.
Seven senate Democrats including Sinema have previously voted against Sanders’ proposed $15 federal minimum wage amendment to President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 relief bill. (RELATED: Seven Senate Democrats Vote Against Raising The Minimum Wage To $15/Hour)
The Republican alternative proposed raising the minimum wage to $10 an hour over the course of five years, introduced Feb. 23 by Romney and Republican Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton. It failed to advance further due to the low wage and immigration provision, according to HuffPost.
Though Romney’s counter-proposal stalled, it has set the stage for bipartisan collaboration that is now shaping up, according to Forbes.