WASHINGTON (AP) - An increase in the minimum wage is again being delayed because it's attached to the Iraq war spending bill that President Bush plans to veto.
It's been ten years since the last federal minimum-wage increase, and boosting it from $5.15 to $7.25 per hourover the next two years was a key element of the Democrats' midterm election platform.
Republicans say Democrats could have had a minimum-wage bill passed and signed by now if they hadn't added it to the Iraq war bill. But a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute says, "That's just a temporary detour." Alan Viard says Democrats will find a way to quickly move the minimum-wage legislation back to the White House.
Currently, a person working 40 hours per week at the current minimum wage makes about $10,700 a year. An increase to $7.25 would boost that to just over $15,000 a year.