LAWRENCE WITTNER – On June 19, 2019, President Donald Trump bragged at his re-election kickoff rally in Orlando that, thanks to his leadership, the wages of American workers â€œare rising at the fastest rate in many decades.â€ The reality, however, is that they are not. Indeed, wages rose at a faster rate only a few years before, under his predecessor. And a key reason for the very limited wage increases since Trump entered the White House is his administrationâ€™s success in blocking any wage increases for some workers and in reducing wage increases for others.
LAWRENCE S. WITTNER – Some 47 million Americans live in poverty, and a key reason is the decline of the minimum wage. First established under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, the nationwide minimum wage was designed to lift millions of American workers out of poverty and to stimulate the economy. Unfortunately, however, it was not indexed to inflation, and big businesses — hostile from the start — fought, often successfully, to prevent congressional action to raise it.