Bruce Braley Case

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In his race for the open Iowa Senate seat, Democratic Rep. Bruce Braley has put great emphasis on Social Security. That’s good – Social Security is a crucial program for millions of Americans and the biggest domestic line item in the federal budget. But Braley’s political focus on Social Security doesn’t mean he actually has a policy in mind to fix it. According to the DesMoines Register, Braley “believes raising the federal minimum wage would add billions of dollars to the Social Security trust fund and extend its solvency.” But would it? The Congressional Budget Office estimates that raising the minimum wage to $10.10 would boost earnings for around 16.5 million workers, while causing up to 1 million jobs to be eliminated. To me that’s not a great trade-off: according to CBO, the typical family living below the poverty line would see its annual income rise by only around $300, or about 2.8%. But for up to 1 million workers, their salaries would go to zero. Since most minimum wage workers receive a raise within one year anyway, eliminating jobs and cutting off from the first run on the ladder of job promotion seems too high a price to pay.…show more content…
What matters is Braley’s claim that raising the minimum wage would increase Social Security’s revenues by billions and extend the solvency of the trust fund. CBO’s figures don’t directly address those claims, but we can put together a
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