April 30th, 2014
04:23 PM ET
3 months ago

Obama slams GOP over minimum wage vote

Washington (CNN) - A day after returning from his trip to Asia, President Barack Obama swung back into mid-term campaign mode in a fiery attack on Senate Republicans who blocked a bill to raise the minimum wage Wednesday .

"If your member of Congress doesn't support raising the minimum wage, you gotta let them know they're out of step and if they keep putting politics ahead of working Americans, you'll put them out of office," Obama said.

twitter-follow screen_name='JimAcostaCNN']

The President's comments came just hours after nearly the entire Senate GOP caucus voted in support of a filibuster thwarting a Democratic-led measure to raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10 per hour.

In a campaign style event at the White House, the President introduced the new Twitter hashtag #1010means to encourage Democrats to take the fight over the minimum wage on to social media.

"So my message to the American people is this – do not get discouraged by a vote like the one we saw this morning. Get fired up, get organized, get your voices heard."

Republicans argue raising the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour would damage the nation's fragile recovery. Several GOP lawmakers took note of fresh economic data released Wednesday indicating the economy grew at a sluggish 0.1% in the first quarter of 2014.

"They seem to think they can coast on talking points and stale ideas – and that the American people haven't been paying attention to their recent dismal record at actually helping the people they claim to care about," Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said.

In his remarks on the failed vote in the Senate, Obama made a pitch to restore emergency unemployment benefits and assailed Republicans for their attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, two key Democratic lines of attack for the upcoming mid-term elections.

President signs executive order on minimum wage

Minimum wage state by state

The President also praised states that have raised the minimum wage on their own, including Hawaii, Connecticut and Maryland.

Following Obama's speech, supporters chanted "raise the wage," giving the White House event even more of a campaign feel.


Filed under: Minimum wage • President Obama • Senate
soundoff (103 Responses)
  1. J Anthony

    I don't how these people are able to live with themselves. This is purely political,and anyone who buys the b.s. that raising the minimum wage ever so slightly will somehow cause signifigant damage is brainwashed. Everyone needs to start making some noise and get these smug, hypocritical plutocrats out of office.

    April 30, 2014 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  2. Gurgyl

    --listen the knee jerk ideas of GOP thugs, Republican garbage need to be put aside, RAISE MINIMUM WAGE–yes, IT IS LONG OVERDUE. PERIOD. RIA, FOR THE LAST SIX YEARS, THIS NATION IS DOING EXCELLENT. IT IS A STRONG BLOW FROM bush needless wars. That drained. Do not victimize the American Middle Class. Yes, USA is recuperating from wars and Trickle down garbage. Yes, Raise Minimum wage immediately. Period.

    April 30, 2014 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  3. Dead Bear

    Well if raising the minimum wage is a deal-breaker with the GOP, they shouldn't expect a whole lot of enthusiasm for their cut taxes for the wealthy idea either. I'm sorry, but the "poor little rich kid" routine is getting mighty stale, Mitch.

    April 30, 2014 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  4. it must be said

    People that make minimum wage have minimum skills. If they want to make more, they need a skill set worth more. Why should the government mandate a 20-25% pay raise for some people? If they think they can make more at another job, then they need to go work there. Why is the government forcing some businesses to massively increase their labor costs? Didn't the Democrats learn anything from their Obamacare fiasco? Obviously not.

    April 30, 2014 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  5. freedom

    Obama is once again distracting from all of his abuses of power, lies, and criminal acts. The Benghazi proof of lies is unfolding, and it all points to him.

    April 30, 2014 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  6. Chuck

    Obama Loves Slamming Americans, hes been doing it for 5.5 years hes good at it
    who needs an enemy when we have Obamanation

    April 30, 2014 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  7. Joe

    How is it "purely political" and "b.s." if they were trying to vote on it and it got filibustered. If it wasn't filibustered, then congress would have actually been doing something. Tell me, what is your definition of "purely political"? Just whenever congress does anything, or does anything you don't agree with? If it was purely political they'd just be talking about it, but no they actually tried to pass it but the GOP blocked it. But it's YOU telling US that WE'RE the ones that are brainwashed. Give me a break.

    April 30, 2014 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  8. Sniffit

    "Do they scoff at themselves when they see such people trying to get by in life? Or have they convinced themselves these folks are "making a difference" and enjoying themselves?"

    I think it's more along the lines of this: "Death is God's way of planning your obsolescence. Right up until then, you should be working to make the rich, whose virtue and worthiness and deserving natures are evidenced by their wealth, even richer. You were put here on this earth as labor and should labor until you die. Surviving past your useful labor life is a sin and damaging to society."

    April 30, 2014 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  9. cmml

    Anyone who understands economics knows that raising the minimum wage during a weak economy is a bad idea. Every successful minimum wage increase occurred when the economy was strong. That's why there are 1 million jobs at risk with a 40% wage increase

    April 30, 2014 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  10. ProudDem

    just asking

    haven't they done enough damage to our economy and jobs over the last 6 years?
    ___________________________________

    Right....Economy better....employment better.....that equals "damage"

    April 30, 2014 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  11. just asking

    why don't the democrats just mandate a $100,000/year salary for every person? we would eradicate poverty with the stroke of a pen, right?

    April 30, 2014 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  12. Sniffit

    "Why should the government mandate a 20-25% pay raise for some people? "

    Because this nation, our society, decided long ago that a person shouldn't be incapable of surviving on a fair week's worth of work. Salaries and wages that are so low that they do not meet an employees' basic needs for food, shelter and clothing are, quite simply, abusive....particularly when their labor is what is actually generating the massive revenue that allows the executives and owners and shareholders to become insanely rich. There's no "sweat equity" in abusive labor practices. There's no fairness. It's borderline serfdom, and people like the Koch brothers and Waltons are nothing more than feudalist overlords buying influence over our economy and government and policies in order to keep people subject to these abusive labor practices that redistribute the wealth upwards.

    April 30, 2014 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  13. sjandrewbsme

    I think the GOP should table a vote for a $100/hr minimum wage and lambaste the Dems for their lack of compassion.

    April 30, 2014 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  14. Sniffit

    "Anyone who understands economics knows that raising the minimum wage during a weak economy is a bad idea."

    Really? Is that why there's consensus among most expert economists that this is a good idea? Interesting. Maybe Krugman should just send you his Nobel Prize, right?

    April 30, 2014 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  15. Evan Bang

    #1010means higher tax rates. #1010means higher healthcare premiums. #1010means you support a president with an agenda to appear as a super hero before the next guy comes in and has to clean up the mess. Just like Bush only not Bush.

    April 30, 2014 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  16. stormchaser101

    Anyone who works for hourly wages and votes repub deserves the nothing they get.wake up!

    April 30, 2014 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  17. lagergeld

    Obama can go to hell. This is a just a shell game to get votes. Prices will simply increase to cover the wage increase, thus amounting to no gain at all. Want to help unskilled workers?

    STOP GIVING THEIR JOBS TO ILLEGAL ALIENS.

    April 30, 2014 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  18. Huh?

    @just asking
    why don't the democrats just mandate a $100,000/year salary for every person? we would eradicate poverty with the stroke of a pen, right?
    ----–
    I understand you are asking a rhetorical question to prove a point. I do not think our liberal friends get it.

    April 30, 2014 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  19. lagergeld

    It would be far more helpful to push illegal aliens out of jobs that unskilled Americans need. Will they? NO – they are too busy pandering to illegal aliens for cheap labor that undercuts US workers and trying to legalize them so they can use their votes to consolidate power and turn this country into a left-wing toilet

    April 30, 2014 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  20. santiagodraco

    You are brainwashed. Republicans have turned into America's version of fanatical Muslims. You either can't see or your force yourself to not see what is counter to your self serving ideology.

    April 30, 2014 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  21. MNClownfactory

    I see the Obama haters are out in droves today! low skill's do mean low pay, but low pay shouldnt be so low you cannot afford to feed your kids or put a roof over you head with a full time job. 10.10 is NOTHING I dare any of the GOP Obama haters on here to try to live to 6 month on that much or less pay and then come tell me people do not deserve a living wage. An American should be able to have a chance to move up in this country, Without having 3 fulltime jobs, you see with 3 full time jobs their is no time for education, without education how does anyone get "high skill" jobs for higher pay? Hey Tea Pub's......it is all connected and just because your bitter over some laborer getting a fair shake for what ever reason doesn't mean it is the right thing for the country. If your rant is about job loss, that is probably and most likely a small percentage. That will inturn rejuice the eoncomy with goods these folks will be able to purchase for their families.

    April 30, 2014 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  22. santiagodraco

    ProudDem (translates as CompleteMoron) says: ProudDem

    just asking

    haven't they done enough damage to our economy and jobs over the last 6 years?"
    ______

    ProudIdioticDem, there are none so blind as will not see. If you truely believe that returning to the horrible years under Bush is a good thing then there's no hope for you. If you can't see how much better off we are now than we were then... well... you need to really try to think sometime instead of being blinded to your fanaticism.

    April 30, 2014 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  23. santiagodraco

    I suggest that everyone with common sense look through these posts for the blatantly exaggerated quips and non-sequetors like "we shoud just table the vote and push for 100dollars an hour then they can complain about a lack of compassion".

    What kinds of foolish people we have in America today. It's like we are living in an arab country where sense and reason don't apply but only fanatical misrepresentations of truth and a completely selfish self serving culture.

    People stop being sheep and blindly following. You can do better.

    April 30, 2014 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  24. Danno

    Am i wrong or will raising minimum wage affect the employer's bottom line? People will either loose jobs or the price of every single product will sky rocket. People who are already making above minimum wage will be screwed....Maybe I'm just blind...

    April 30, 2014 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  25. Dean

    Obama wants to raise minium wage for more tax money. For every dollar of raise 15 cents pours into SOC from dollar one and Medicare is taxed from dollar one. Obama does not like poor people he loves to tax them.

    April 30, 2014 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
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