Unions Demand GOP Candidates Support Job-Killing Wage Hikes

Ahead of the first Republican presidential primary debate, organizers with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and Fight for $15 are threatening to protest the venue. Yet the Fight for $15’s namesake policy to raise minimum wages has drawn bipartisan opposition and would cause significant job loss and earnings loss for affected employees.

Now another progressive push for a $17 federal minimum wage is estimated to cost as many as 1.7 million jobs nationwide.

Consider the evidence:

  • A study of three decades of economic research found that 80% of all studies find wage hikes cause significant job loss for minimum wage earners;
  • Sixty-two percent of economists oppose a $15 federal minimum wage, with three-quarters indicating it would harm youth employment;
  • Tipped restaurant employees have been fighting union ploys to eliminate tip credits across the country, arguing doing so hurts their livelihoods and income.
  • A $15 minimum wage plan, pushed by progressives and supported by President Biden, was killed in 2021 by a bipartisan group of Senators.

Rebekah Paxton, EPI’s research director issued the following statement:

“The SEIU and Fight for $15 have long been more interested in PR opportunities to boost their organization, not good policies that actually help workers. There’s a reason Republicans and Democrats alike oppose these wage hikes: instead of choosing reasonable policies that sustain businesses and jobs, unions are pushing irresponsible targets that kill jobs and cut earnings for American workers.”