Political conservatives in the United States generally believe in free markets and limited government, which makes President Obama's State of the Union push for a higher federal minimum wage a controversial prospect.
However, the parallel conservative belief in personal responsibility, and Gallup polls that show a majority of Americans support the idea, gives grounding for some conservative thinkers to back the plan.
Here are six quotes presenting conservative perspectives on increasing the federal minimum wage:
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"Increasing the minimum wage increases the cost of employing minimum-wage workers. Because of this, many economists worry that a higher minimum wage will translate into fewer jobs for these workers, as businesses take steps to keep their payroll costs down." Michael R. Strain, resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, in an op-ed to The Washington Post.
"It seems likely that the increase in the minimum wage of nearly 25 percent (from $7.25 to $9 an hour) currently envisaged by the Obama administration will have little or no effect on the number of jobs," economist Dr. Thomas Piketty writes in his book, according to The Washington Post.
He added, "Obviously, raising the minimum wage cannot continue indefinitely: as the minimum wage increases, the negative effects on the level of employment eventually win out. If the minimum wage were doubled or tripled, it would be surprising if the negative impact were not dominant."
"Given conservatives are generally more concerned about having the poor earn their welfare, so to speak, and also keeping government smaller, I think they still should favor the minimum wage more than they do. At the very least, I believe they should oppose it less," said Adam Ozimek, Forbes business contributor.
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"There are so many very low-wage workers, and we pay for huge social welfare programs for them. This would save something on the order of tens of billions of dollars. Doesn't it make more sense for employers to pay their workers than the government?" Ron Unz, publisher of The American Conservative, according to The New York Times.
"There is a conservative view to be made in favor of the minimum wage, and regular increases in the minimum wage, on the grounds that its neglected macroeconomic effects also would militate against another thing that conservatives hold to be equally as bad: redistribution." said Oren Levin-Waldman, according to AFL-CIO.
"My problem with raising the minimum wage is not that I want to deny someone $10.10. I'm worried about the people whose wages are going to go down to zero because you've made them more expensive than a machine." said Sen. Marco Rubio as reported on Bloomberg.
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