Late today, the Senate passed its version of a minimum wage increase 94-3. Unlike the House bill, the Senate version includes tax giveaways to business, and it’s unclear what happens next.
(Who are the three winners of the Deepest Hatred of Workers Award? Bob Geiger reports: Sens. Jon Kyl, Tom Coburn and Jim DeMint.)
Both Congressional Quarterly and CongressDaily AM reported today that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will not send the bill to the House right away, because it would get blocked procedurely by members insisting on a clean bill. Instead, Reid will informally discuss the next steps with Speaker Nancy Pelosi and try to work out an agreement.
Of note, earlier today the Economic Policy Institute definitely debunked the notion that minimum wage hikes need to be saddled with business tax breaks:
…the actual tax cuts proposed … have no relevance to the impact of a minimum wage increase. The only justifiable concern pertaining to a minimum wage increase is the elimination of some low-wage jobs. Available empirical evidence shows such an outcome is likely to be negligible … and some research shows the surprising possibility of a positive effect on jobs.