The Senate earlier this week rejected two proposals to raise the federal minimum wage, which has been stuck at a $5.15 for eight years, and is now worth less in real terms than during all but two of the last 48 years (according to the Economic Policy Institute
). Yet as EPI points out, a recent Pew Survey
shows that only 6% of Americans oppose a minimum wage increase, and over 80% view it as either important or a top priority. Some might react to this by trashing the minimum wage as incipient communism, or by trashing EPI as a leftist conspiracy, but what I really want to know is how and why 6% are having their way on this issue. If this is functional (small r) republican government, I'd hate to see dysfunctional.