PunditFact checks Mitch McConnell on minimum wage statement

5:55 PM, Jan 27, 2014   |    comments
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St. Petersburg, Florida - President Barack Obama will address the country in his State of the Union this week. In it, we expect him to again call for raising the minimum wage.

Republicans are ready to shut that down and are talking about how it won't work. PunditFact is checking their statements.

President Obama would like to raise the federal minimum wage rate from $7.25 to $10.10 over the course of three years.

On Fox News Sunday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell made the argument that  people making minimum wage are not necessarily the people who are surviving or raising a family, so raising it won't help the economy as much as the President thinks it will.

Here's what he said: "The minimum wage is mostly an entry-level wage for young people."

PunditFact checked with the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which keeps tracks of all the people who make minimum wage found three million people make $7.25 or below.

"Of those three million, about half are 25 and under. Of all the people who make minimum wage, 50% are 25 and under and another 25% are 35 and under, so that accounts for 75% of the people making minimum wage," says Aaron Sharockman, editor at PunditFact.

Because McConnell was right on the numbers, PunditFact rates his statement MOSTLY TRUE.

Why does raising minimum wage remain a big issue for Democrats?

"That's what the President is articulating. He is saying we should have a living wage so that someone who makes the federal minimum wage should be able to care for themselves and care for a family," explains Sharockman.

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