WASHINGTON, March 1 – U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on Monday issued the following statement that he will introduce an amendment to include an increase in the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025 in the final reconciliation bill:
“This week, as part of the reconciliation bill, I will be offering an amendment to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. At a time when millions of workers are earning starvation wages, when the minimum wage has not been raised by Congress since 2007 and stands at a pathetic $7.25 an hour, it is time to raise the minimum wage to a living wage.
“Needless to say, I was extremely disappointed by the decision of the parliamentarian who ruled that the minimum wage provision was inconsistent with the Byrd Rule and the reconciliation process. But even more importantly, I regard it as absurd that the parliamentarian, a Senate staffer elected by no one, can prevent a wage increase for 32 million workers.
“My own personal view is that the Senate should ignore the parliamentarian’s advice, which is wrong in a number of respects. I am not sure, however, that my view at this point is the majority view in the Democratic Caucus.
“Obviously, as soon as we can, we must end the filibuster that currently exists in the U.S. Senate. Given the enormous crises facing working families today, we cannot allow a minority of the Senate to obstruct what the vast majority of the American people want and need.”