Media Matters vs. The Truth about Wage Hikes

Proponents of a higher minimum wage are determined to make their case no matter how much evidence piles up against them. It’s like a lawyer who knows he’s been handed a bad case but the law says he must be a zealous advocate no matter how insurmountable the odds. Case in point: An “analysis” published yesterday at left-wing attack shop Media Matters, which relied on selective paraphrasing to try and downplay the role that a higher minimum wage played in Walmart’s decision to abandon two planned stores in the District.

Here’s what the Post reported in January (emphasis added):

“Evans said that, behind closed doors, Walmart officials were more frank about the reasons the company was downsizing. He said the company cited the District’s rising minimum wage, now at $11.50 an hour and possibly going to $15 an hour if a proposed ballot measure is successful in November.”

Clearly, the minimum wage played a role in the company’s decision to pull out of its DC plans, which we accurately described in a subsequent op-ed in the same paper:

“Councilmembers initially pointed a finger at Walmart’s management, but subsequent reporting in The Post pointed right back at them: An $11.50 an hour minimum wage starting July 1, which may be rising even higher to $15 if a proposed ballot measure passes in November, was cited by the company as a determining factor in its decision.”

Instead of quoting our op-ed, Media Matters paraphrased and suggested that we “blamed Walmart’s actions almost entirely” on the higher minimum wage. In their headline, they go so far as to say we “falsely blame[d]” Walmart’s decision on the minimum wage–a statement directly contradicted by the Post’s original reporting.

The rest of  their “analysis” is a lazy attempt to dismiss the well-documented consequences of a higher minimum wage. According to a recent paper released by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco , the latest, best and most-credible studies show that job losses occur after the minimum wage goes up. These studies are well-supported by copious stories from around the country of businesses that have scaled back or closed altogether in response to  new wage mandates. [Facesof$]

The facts are abundantly clear in this case. Media Matters just can’t bring itself to accept the truth.