BUSY BUSY BUSY – As the female head of the Texas GOP PAC RedState Women tries to justify unequal pay for women, Progressives are making raising the minimum THE top women’s issue of 2014. Raising the minimum wage would instantly reduce the gender pay gap by nearly five percent, according to a White House Council of Economic Advisors report. PROGRESSIVE FEMALE LEADERS ON RAISING THE MINIMUM WAGE … NOW President Terry O’Neill: “[It is] absolutely essential to empowering women today” … Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards: “[It is] a defining issue of our time” … National Women’s Law Center Co-Founder and Co-President Nancy Duff Campbell: “[It is] more critical than ever in the fight for equal pay for women” … EMILY’s List President Stephanie Schriock: “[Raising the minimum wage] is one of the most important things we can do” … Agenda Project Founder and President Erica Payne: “Women … are at the center of a critical–and imminently winnable–fight that would instantly create a measurably more equal nation.”
These women all agree with EPI, Demos, the NAACP, over 600 economists, The Smart Capitalists, 57 percent of business owners, the Obama Administration, and even top conservatives that raising the minimum wage is the right thing to do … so why are top broadcast networks ABC, CBS, NBS, and PBS silent on this issue?
Over 15 million women, including one in five working mothers, would receive a raise if the federal minimum wage was increased to $10.10, according to new findings by the NWLC. Women make up two-thirds of all minimum wage workers. More than 70 percent of restaurant servers are women. A mother with two dependents working full time on a minimum wage salary still falls $4,000 short of the poverty line … Raising the federal minimum wage would also reduce government spending for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) by $46 billion over the next 10 years. CAP President Neera Tanden sums it up: “Lawmakers calling themselves fiscal conservatives should wholly embrace a minimum wage increase…”
MIN WAGE MUST READS: “Hey Sheryl: Lean on This” by Agenda Project President and Smart Capitalists Spokesperson Erica Payne; “The Great U-Turn” by Former Secretary of Labor and Top Wonk Robert Reich; and “Understanding CBO’s Minimum-Wage Report” by CAP Senior Fellow Scott Lilly. WATCH an animated history of the minimum wage and DOWNLOAD Half-in-Ten’s minimum wage action toolkit.
MOMMA CARES — With 13 days left before the March 31st enrollment deadline, Healthcare.gov launched #YourMomCares, a video campaign featuring Jonah Hill, Adam Levine, Jennifer Lopez, and Alicia Keys’ moms encouraging viewers to enroll in the ACA exchanges. Over 5 million individuals have already signed up, with 8 out of 10 insurees eligible for federal financial assistance to help pay for the insurance. Also CHECK OUT Obama on Funny or Die’s Between Two Ferns, which has already garnered 15 million views and a 40 percent increase in traffic to Healthcare.gov.
On March 6th CEPR Co-Director and Top Wonk Dean Baker gave testimony on the impact of the ACA on self-employment at the Obamacare and the Self-Employed: What About Us? hearing before the U.S. House Committee on Small Business Subcommittee on Contracting and Workforce. READ his testimony HERE.
HIGHER ED, NOT DEBT — Demos, Generation Progress, CAP, Working Families, AFL-CIO, AFSCME, and many other organizations launched “Higher Ed, Not Debt,” a campaign focused on tackling the $1.2 trillion education debt currently affecting over 40 million Americans. Demos Vice President of Policy and Research and co-author of the new report “The Great Cost Shift Continues: State Higher Education Funding After the Recession“: “The diminishing affordability of higher education is eroding one of the last secure pathways into the middle class. The growth of our debt-for-diploma system has only intensified since the Great Recession.” WATCH an informational video about the campaign HERE.
MYTHBUSTERS, PROGRESSIVE STYLE — Media Matters created “Mythopedia,” a new app designed to quickly fact-check Conservative dissemblings. The site now has around 400 entries but will be updated regularly, and can be downloaded on smartphones. Simply enter a claim into the search engine and find out the real facts with links to research. TRY it HERE.
ONE NATION UNDER-WOOD – Taking a cue from House of Cards season 2, the Economic Policy Institute (EPI) released a new report finding that combating currency manipulation would increase the annual GDP by between $288-$720 billion, create 2.3-5.8 million jobs, and reduce trade deficits. The report cites China and several other foreign countries involved in currency manipulation. READ: “Stop Currency Manipulation and Create Millions of Jobs.”
AT THE END OF THE RAINBOW – CAP published “Beyond Bullying,” a new study analyzing how hostile school climates exacerbate the school-to-prison pipeline for LGBT students of color. The report was released in conjunction with the President’s launch of the “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative. “Beyond Bullying” co-author Preston Mitchum: “LGBT youth, particularly those of color, are pushed out of schools and into juvenile and criminal justice systems at alarming rates. What’s more, the higher rates of punishment of these youth do not correlate to higher rates of misconduct. We must continue to examine the experiences of LGBT youth in schools, beyond bullying, to better understand why they are disproportionately caught in the school-to-prison pipeline.” CHECK OUT an infographic and READ the full report HERE.
THE PRESIDENTS’ BANKERS — Demos Senior Fellow and Top Wonk Nomi Prins will be discussing her new book All the Presidents’ Bankers at The Strand in New York on Tuesday, April 8. Fellow Top Wonk Tom Ferguson: “All the Presidents’ Bankers is gracefully written, carefully researched, and accessible. It is a must read for anyone concerned with politics and economics–in other words, just about everybody.” FIND OUT more and RSVP HERE.
TRANSPARENCYCAMP – Sunlight Foundation will be hosting the fifth annual TransparencyCamp open.gov “unconference” May 30 and 31 at the George Mason University Arlington campus. Events will focus on topics like government transparency and opening up public data. Everyone is welcome. LEARN MORE and REGISTER HERE.
FROM THE WONK WIRE …
… UNCHAINED MELODY: Social Security Works Co-Director and Top Wonk Nancy Altman and Social Security Works Founding Co-Director and Top Wonk Eric Kingson reveal how Progressives defeated the chained CPI.
Find out more at www.TopWonks.org.
… ON OUR AGENDA … Check out and FOLLOW PP’s Twitter ** @PractProgress **