Obama: It's time for Congress to raise minimum wage

March 8, 2014 at 12:13 PM
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WASHINGTON, March 8 (UPI) -- U.S. President Barack Obama Saturday criticized Republican members of Congress for not wanting to increase the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.

Obama said he met with governors in New England who are trying to raise the minimum wage in their states because Congress has not yet voted on raising the federal minimum wage.

"This week, I traveled to New England, where I was joined by four governors who are working to raise the minimum wage in each of their states. And they've also joined me in calling on Congress to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour," Obama said in his weekly Saturday radio and Internet address. "Because it would give nearly 800,000 Americans in their states a raise -- and lift wages for about 28 million across the country."

However, Republicans in Congress are doing little to raise wages, Obama said.

"About half of all Republicans support raising the minimum wage, too. It's just too bad they don't serve in Congress," the president said. "Because the Republicans who do serve in Congress don't want to vote on the minimum wage at all. Some even want to get rid of it completely. Seriously."

"Outside Washington, Americans are ready to put aside old political arguments and move this country forward," Obama said. "The American people are way ahead of Congress on this issue, and we've just got to let Congress know that. It's time for 'ten-ten.' It's time to give America a raise. And it's time to restore opportunity for all."

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