Romney and Cotton Want to Punish Businesses With Minimum Wage Hike and More Immigration Paperwork
Sen. Mitt Romney (R–Utah) spent the last several years at the forefront of the unofficial anti-Trump conservative coalition on Capitol Hill. In his latest turn, however, he is taking a cue from the populist Trumpian policy agenda, announcing a proposed increase to the federal minimum wage.
There’s a catch. “I’m introducing a bill with @SenTomCotton that would increase the minimum wage,” tweeted Romney, “while ensuring businesses cannot hire illegal immigrants. We must protect American workers.”
Romney added that the proposal “gradually raises the minimum wage without costing jobs, setting it to increase automatically with inflation.”
Members of the GOP have historically rebuffed such efforts, casting them as an economically unsound, one-size-fits-all band-aid that takes away state agency and spurs job losses. The data are on their side: A recent Congressional Budget Office report noted that increasing the minimum wage to $15 an hour would lift 900,000 people out of poverty but simultaneously destroy 1.4 million jobs—a metric that was held up as proof positive that Democrats’ recent push to pass that minimum wage increase via budget reconciliation would hurt the people they want to help.
Though the Romney-Cotton bill has yet to be unveiled, how exactly they plan to skirt job losses remains unclear—even if the figure they settle on si
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