California Democrat Rep. Ro Khanna exposed how leftist politicians really feel about small businesses during an appearance on CNN’s “Inside Politics” Sunday – claiming that small businesses who cannot afford $15 an hour minimum wage should not exist.
Khanna argued that “we don’t want low-wage businesses” who cannot afford to compete with the likes of Amazon and McDonalds who can afford to pay their employees the newly proposed $15 per hour federally mandated minimum wage.
The stubborn push by radical leftists to increase the minimum wage would not only skyrocket the average cost of living, but would also have a devastating impact on the American workforce.
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office predicted raising the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025 would cost 1.4 million Americans their jobs over the next four years.
CNN Anchor Abby Phillip said, “I know that you feel very strongly like many progressives about the minimum wage issue. Right now, at the same time, businesses, both large and small, are struggling in this pandemic economy, more than 9 million jobs have been lost in the last year, and they still aren’t back, and the problem is particularly acute in industries like retail and foodservice, which are more likely to pay minimum wage. I think the question that a lot of Republicans are posing and perhaps some moderate Democrats is timing. Is now the right time to increase it to $15? I should say the bill has stages, of course, but immediately it would go up about 30% right now. Is now the right time to do that?”
Khanna said, “Abby, it’s absolutely the right time to give working Americans a raise. Let’s look at the facts. Amazon raised their wage to $15 nationally, not regionally. They have more jobs today. It didn’t hurt job creation or business. Target followed. They also did it nationally, more jobs.”
Phillip said, “Large businesses like Amazon and McDonald’s, for example, can and perhaps should pay more, but I’m wondering what is your plan for smaller businesses? How does this, in your view, affect mom and pop businesses who are just struggling to keep their doors open, keep workers on pate roll right now?”
Khanna said, “Well, they should be doing it by paying people low wages. We don’t want low-wage businesses. Most successful small businesses can pay a fair wage. If you look at the minimum wage, it increased with worker productivity until 1968, and that relationship was severed. If workers were actually getting paid for the value they were creating, it would be up to $23. I love small businesses, I’m all for it, but I don’t want small businesses that are underpaying employees. It’s fair for people to be making what they’re producing. I think $15 is very reasonable in this country.”
It’s worth noting that the large companies which Khanna referenced as examples who have increased their wages during the pandemic, have benefitted from increased sales during lockdowns as small businesses were forced shut, while these multi-national corporations were allowed to remain open.
Prior to the pandemic, roughly half of small businesses only had enough cash to stay in business for 27 days if they stopped bringing in money, according to a JPMorgan Chase Institute analysis. A quarter had a cash buffer that would last them fewer than 13 days. 50% of all small businesses say if they are forced to operate under current conditions for much longer, they will be forced to close.
Add in the mandated $15 minimum wage and the American small businesses that have been the bedrock of our economy since the start, may cease to exist entirely.