Washington (CNN) - It may be a "year of action" for President Obama, but there is one thing he cannot do without Congress: raise the minimum wage.
In his weekly address Saturday, the President took the opportunity to make another plea, appealing to the public to pressure representatives to "give America a raise."
Two recent polls show the public is behind Obama on this one. According to CBS News and Pew Research Center polls, 72% and 73% of Americans support raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour, respectively. Even Republicans are split about half and half, both polls say.
Despite the national support, Obama said, it is Republicans in Congress who stand in the way.
"Even though a majority of Democrats, independents and Republicans across the country support raising the minimum wage, Republicans in Congress don't want to give it a vote," Obama said. "Only Congress can finish the job."
Obama highlighted his own executive order, requiring federal contractors to pay employees at least $10.10 an hour. He also praised the retail company The Gap, which announced earlier this week that it would raise its employees' wages to $10 an hour.
Gap CEO Glenn Murphy said the move was not political, but economic.
"Our decision to invest in front line employees will directly support our business, and is one that we expect to deliver a return many times over," he said in a statement.
The Democrats' minimum wage push took a bit of a hit this week with the release of a Congressional Budget Office report that said while 900,000 people would be lifted out of poverty by an increase, it could also kill 500,000 jobs. Republicans seized on the potential job losses.
"This report confirms what we've long known: While helping some, mandating higher wages has real costs, including fewer people working," said House Speaker John Boehner's press secretary Brendan Buck.
Obama pushed back, using the same report to support his argument.
"That bill would lift wages for more than 16 million Americans without requiring a single dollar in new taxes or spending," he said.
The CBO says 16.5 million Americans would earn higher wages, but it "would be accompanied by reductions of a similar amount in real income from" increases in costs of goods and services, income losses for business owners, and a total loss of income for those 500,000 workers who would lose their jobs.