By Tom Quiner
I present a modest proposal on how to determine the minimum wage: simply adhere to the Constitution and abolish it at the federal level.
Keep in mind, the minimum wage wouldn’t go away. States would be free to continue setting their own minimum wage at whatever level they thought best for their citizens.
What business, though, is it of the federal government anyway? Some say their authority to set the MW is vested in the Commerce Clause of the Constitution which allows them to regulate interstate commerce.
What does the minimum wage have to do with interstate commerce? It is a stretch.
If the feds get out of the way, states are free to better serve their own citizens. They are closer to the economy in their area. Even more, it would create a healthier economic climate by encouraging increased competition between states.
States with a higher wage might be able to attract more and better workers.
States with a lower wage might be able to attract more new business start ups seeking lower labor costs.
There is a direct correlation between a higher minimum wage and higher unemployment rates. Back in May of 2009, the five states with the lowest unemployment rates had a state MW lower than the federal wage.
But five of the six states with the highest unemployment rates had a higher MW wage than the feds.
The federal government should get out of the way and let individual states determine what is best for their citizens.