President Barack Obama plans to act unilaterally to raise the minimum wage for employees of federal contractors, a move that asserts his executive powers before his State of the Union address in which he will press Congress to approve a broader increase this year, write Carol E. Lee and Eric Morath. Read the full WSJ story here.
The executive order would raise the minimum wage for workers on new federal contracts to $10.10 an hour, according to a fact sheet from a White House official. It said Mr. Obama would announce the new policy in his speech Tuesday, which is scheduled to begin at 9 p.m. Eastern Time.
The current federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour, and hasn’t been raised since July 2009. About 16,000 federal employees were paid at or below minimum wage in 2012, according to the Labor Department. The agency doesn’t specify how many employees were government contractors.
Mr. Obama’s executive policy change is the opening salvo in a broader, election-year push by Democrats to raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour for all eligible workers. The White House has planned for months to make the minimum wage an issue in November’s midterm elections.
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