The federal minimum wage is currently $7.25 an hour, making for a full-time annual income of $15,080; if the minimum wage had kept up with inflation since 1968, it would now be $10.55 an hour, for an annual income of $21,944. Workers in 19 states benefit from higher state minimum wages, with 10 states increasing the minimum wage along with inflation. Many polls find that raising the minimum wage is widely popular, and economists say that doing so would give 28 million workers a raise, not just those making $7.25 an hour but millions earning slightly more whose pay would be increased as companies adjusted their pay scales.
Congressional Democrats have proposals to raise the minimum wage, but Republicans, of course, won't hear of it. As individuals, their answers to questions on the subject range from befuddled to hostile, but national Republicans are no more willing to pass an increase than the New York Republicans who (with an assist from Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo) blocked such a bill in the state.