Answer from the American Public.
As part of its efforts to counter the increasing strength in the Republican Party, the United States Chamber of Commerce has been running an advertising blitz, “A Winning Political Game,” targeting Democrats who have supported an initiative to establish a national minimum wage.
“The big winner in this ad campaign is the president, who has repeatedly opposed raising the wage floor, while Hillary Clinton would raise it — a view that is shared by a very large portion of the American public,” Chamber spokesman Dan Holler said.
The initiative, proposed by Sen. Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin and Sen. Brian Schatz of Hawaii, would give the minimum wage to $10.10 by 2015 and eventually expand to $15.20 in 2016. It would apply to all employers who “do business” in the country, but it would apply especially to large businesses, which employ large numbers of non-farm jobs.
But it wasn’t enough for some Republicans, especially in the early-to-mid primary state of Wisconsin, as many viewed them “un-American.”
In an opinion piece in the conservative Green Bay newspaper, state Rep. Peter Barca (R) likened the wage increase to slavery. “The president’s economic policy is the same. It’s a tax grab that will hurt Wisconsin.”
“The proposal is designed so that the largest businesses will be able to maintain their profits and the lowest paid employees will be forced to compete for jobs,” Barca wrote.
Some local business owners also expressed disapproval. “The Chamber’s ad isn’t going to change people’s views on minimum-wage increases, but it is a great opportunity to get the word out to people — especially those who have been critical of the president’s efforts in pushing through a big tax hike on low-income working families,” said Michael Sallinger, head of economic growth efforts for the Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce.
The Chamber’s approach has been widely criticized, particularly because it relies on a poll in which most of its targets live in one swing state and it relies on surveys taken in states that Democrats traditionally have a firm grasp on.
“We’re using our polling to push a message for an issue we think will help define the election, but it certainly puts the Chamber in an awkward position,” said Mark Holden, director of the Yale Politics Group at the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Politics. “We have to be careful about the polling it uses and also don’t use it to make the
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