Home » Opinion » Editorials
Want to hurt workers? Raise the minimum wage
In the last session, legislators repealed New Hampshire's minimum wage law, defaulting to the federal minimum of $7.25 per hour. As expected, Democratic members of the House are pushing to reestablish the state minimum at $8 an hour and raise it every two years.
Rep. Timothy Horrigan, D-Durham, a sponsor of that bill (House Bill 127), said, "I think wages in general are too low for working people. We seem to have accepted in the private sector that people doing the actual work, people at the bottom of the ladder, people out in the field, haven't had a pay raise for years. We sort of accept that as a fact of life, and now it's being used against public workers who have been attacked for having the audacity to ask for a pay raise."
This is an extraordinary comment. Horrigan admits that the goal of his bill really is to raise pay for public employees.
What about the private sector? HB 127 would hurt low-wage workers, not help them. Economists David Neumark and William Wascher found in their 2006 National Bureau of Economic Research review of more than 100 minimum wage studies that "the oft-stated assertion that recent research fails to support the traditional view that the minimum wage reduces the employment of low-wage workers is clearly incorrect.... In addition, among the papers we view as providing the most credible evidence, almost all point to negative employment effects, both for the United States as well as for many other countries."
They also found that "the studies that focus on the least-skilled groups provide relatively overwhelming evidence of stronger disemployment effects for these groups." That is, raising the minimum wage causes even more of the lowest-skilled people not to be hired.
If New Hampshire legislators want to hurt low-skilled workers, they will hardly find a quicker and more effective method than raising the minimum wage.
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Deerfield teacher honored by national science organization - 0
- Institute of Art graduates its largest class in Manchester - 0
- UNH hires firm to redesign one of its logos - 23
- Lakes Region, Great Bay CC hold commencement ceremonies - 0
- UNH Law School grads told to 'serve justice' - 0
- Stonyfield founder tells FPU grads to ask, 'Why not?' - 1
- Tiny Thomas More College class urged to be courageous - 0
- Lebanon College graduates 19 - 0
- Plymouth State speaker tells grads to 'Become agents of change' - 1
READER COMMENTS: 0
- NHIAA boxscores, summaries for May 20, 2013 - 0
- Police say man held girlfriend in car, arrest him - 0
- Overtime puts stress on Nashua police budget - 0
- Manchester, church group seek accord on breakfast for homeless - 1
- Ky. Sen. Rand Paul to NH GOP: Let's look like America - 2
- Man gunned down on Manchester street was talented graffiti artist - 0
- Experts weigh in on UNH logo designs - 0
- Two had a NH history before brutal Bedford attack - 0
- Derry marks a soldier's death - 0
Memorial Day Observances 2013
Bedford's Shapiro hits lacrosse milestone
Texting + driving = deadly consequences
Goffstown holds off on school borrowing
Experts weigh in on UNH logo designs
Not so merry: Giving Robin Hood a bad name