Should Minimum Wage Be Left To The States?

Does leaving the minimum wage up to states work?
Posted at 6:43 PM, Oct 28, 2015

For some Republican candidates, raising the minimum wage isn't something they support because they believe the minimum wage should be left up to the states, if not the market.

"First, I believe that minimum wage should be a state decision, not a federal decision. Why? Because it makes no sense to say that the minimum wage in New York City is the same as the minimum wage in Mason City, Iowa," said Carly Fiorina.

"We need to leave it to the private sector. I think state minimum wages are fine. The federal government shouldn't be doing this," said Jeb Bush.

In some ways, minimum wages across the country do support the idea that state and local governments will act on their own, without a push from the federal government.

Twenty-nine states have taken the minimum wage into their own hands, and have one that's higher than the federal minimum wage. That seems to support the idea that states will make sure the minimum wage is fair, without the help of the federal government.

But supporters of raising the federal minimum wage point out that even in states where the wage is higher, it still isn't enough to live on. (Video via Fight for 15)

A living wage calculator from MIT found that across the country, minimum wages are lower than the living wage. The professor who made the calculator said, "In many places in the United States, it would take working two-and-a-half to three minimum wage jobs to make ends meet."

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 3.3 million Americans make the minimum wage or less, like some servers working for tips.

This video includes an image from Getty Images.