The House bill to raise the federal minimum wages was blocked in the Senate by the majority leader Mitch McConnell who branded it as a jobs' killer.
The bill was more than double the previous federal minimum wage, which was $7.25 an hour, i.e., about $15,000 a year for an individual working 40 hours a week, or about $10,000 less than the federal poverty level for a family of four. The wages had not been raised since 2009, the longest time the country had gone without increasing the minimum wages since it was established in 1938.
The bill was passed along party lines by 231-199 votes. However, it was branded to be a job killer by the Republican senators. It faced a blockade in the Senate where majority leader Mitch McConnell said that he would not take up the bill as it could kill jobs and depress the economy at a time when it’s thriving for the American people. Thus, the bill that passed the House got blocked in the Senate.
In the latest move on the wages, the President-elect, Joe Biden, will seek to increase the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour as part of his $1.9 trillion pandemic relief bill.