Minnesota Lawmakers Mock Poor with ‘Minimum Wage Challenge’
Five Democrats pretend to be poor as a political stunt.
February 20, 2014 - 1:00 pm
Recently, I wrote of a Harvard/CUNY study, conducted by advocates of a single-payer healthcare system, which claims that over 17,000 people will die unless states expand Medicaid. The study rests upon a deeply cynical and inaccurate view of humanity inherent to the Left which regards people as helpless as houseplants.
Now, a group of state lawmakers in Minnesota have announced a political stunt demonstrating that same insulting view of humanity. ThinkProgress reports:
Five state lawmakers in Minnesota have decided to take on the “Minimum Wage Challenge” and live off of a typical budget for a worker who makes the federal minimum wage of $7.25.
The state has one of the lowest minimum wages in the country at $6.15 an hour, which means it gets trumped by the federal wage. A worker who puts in 40 hours a week at that level will earn just $290 before taxes. The challenge limits the lawmakers to $5 a day for food and $9 for transportation.
I am reminded of my high school health class, where it was expected students would learn the hardships of parenthood by carting around a bag of sugar taped to a Cabbage Patch Kids doll. This seems no less puerile.
Rep. Frank Hornstein (D) told CBS Minnesota that it made him take more notice of his costs. “An orange juice was $1.79. That’s not something that I would normally notice,” he said after getting breakfast from McDonald’s Dollar Menu. “Making the decision to take the bus today versus taking the car will save me a little money for dinner. For food,” he added.
Hornstein ought to recognize that the same process of rational judgment which prompts him to consider the price of orange juice while on his restricted budget would also apply when considering obligations like rent, marriage, and parenthood.
Gee, if I make minimum wage, maybe I shouldn’t rent a two-bedroom apartment. Maybe I should aspire to better means before taking on new costs.