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A mere three months after Democratic Oregon Gov. Kate Brown signed a minimum wage hike into law after Democrats rammed it through the legislature over fierce Republican opposition, those same Democratic lawmakers are regretting the move now.
What’s obvious to conservatives — nothing comes without a price — Democrats have to learn the hard way.
Not only does the Oregon law represent the largest state-wide wage floor in the country, it’s also the most convoluted, according to Fox News, which reported:
Wages will rise to $12.50 in rural Oregon, $13.50 in mid-size regions and $14.75 in greater Portland, all by the year 2022.
But before the ink was even dry, Democrats, who control the state House, Senate and governor’s office, announced they wanted to change the bill that was rammed through in a five-week legislative session despite fierce Republican opposition.
Oregon’s House and Senate Democrats were furiously trying to throw something together while labor unions, led by the Service Employees International Union, were collecting signatures for a ballot initiative to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour.
“They just wanted to pass something,” economist Eric Fruits, a Portland Republican, told Fox News. “They were really worried about the ’15 Now’ people sending something to the ballot, and I think they got so snake-bit they would have passed anything that was called a minimum wage increase.”
But the problem was they passed the measure before state economists could evaluate the measure and weigh in.
Now they have, and the answer’s not pretty. Last week the presented their forecast that predicted the wage hike signed into law will “result in approximately 40,000 fewer jobs in 2025 than would have been the case absent the legislation.”
It would have helped had the lawmakers simply talked to their own constituents — the people they claim they to want to serve.
“When those pears and apples are sold on the market, they’re not going to give us any more money because we’re from Oregon and have a higher pay rate,” John Zielinski of E.Z. Orchards said, who’s predicting his family will take a big hit because of it.
Rural counties threatened to file a lawsuit against the state, calling the minimum wage a maximum mess and an unfunded mandate. Oregon’s constitution allows local governments to opt out of state programs that raise costs significantly and are not funded by the legislature.
Now Democratic lawmakers are lamenting that they may have not have acted wisely and are promising a fix-it bill for next year’s legislative session.
Let’s hope they listen to the experts next time. Otherwise farmer Zielinski will be paying the price for the lawmakers’ largess.
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Clip via Fox News Channel.
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