Campaign 2010

Jan 14, 2014

On Minimum Wage, Congressman Scott Rigell Says One Thing and Does the Opposite

Congressman Scott Rigell is again showing Hampton Roads residents that he can’t be trusted in Washington – this time on the critical issue of raising the minimum wage for Virginia workers and families. This morning on C-SPAN, Congressman Rigell said he was “open” to raising the minimum wage – even though Congressman Rigell voted against raising the minimum wage last year.

This hypocrisy is just the latest in a pattern of Congressman Rigell saying one thing to Hampton Roads residents and then doing the opposite in Congress:

“From the sequester to shutdown, former used car salesman Congressman Scott Rigell is saying one thing in Virginia, doing the opposite in Washington, and showing Hampton Roads residents that he can’t be trusted to look out for them,” said David Bergstein of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “Now Congressman Rigell is flip-flopping on raising the minimum wage which is vital to the economic security of Virginia’s families. It’s exactly Congressman Rigell’s type of hypocrisy that Hampton Roads residents hate about the dysfunction in Congress and why they don’t trust Congressman Rigell to break the gridlock in Washington.”

BACKGROUND:

Congressman Rigell Claimed He was “Open” to Raising Minimum Wage, but Voted Against Minimum Wage Increase Last Year. In 2014 Rigell said: “I think you’re advocating a $12 minimum wage… I’m open to looking at that, at minimum if you just look at a cost of living increase, I think there could be some common ground there.”  In March 2013, Rigell voted against a measure to increase the minimum wage from $7e.25 to $10.10 per hour over three years. Upon enactment, the measure would have increased the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.20 within three months. A year from this date, the federal minimum wage would increase from $8.20 to $9.15. A year from this date, the federal minimum wage would increase to $10.10.  [C-SPAN, 1/14/14; HR 803, Vote #74, 3/15/13]

Economic Policy Institute: Raising the Minimum Wage Would Benefit as Many as 30 Million Americans, Generate 140,000 New Jobs. According to the Economic Policy Institute, “Increasing the federal minimum wage to $10.10 by July 1, 2015, would raise the wages of about 30 million workers, who would receive over $51 billion in additional wages over the phase-in period. […] Across the phase-in period of the minimum-wage increase, GDP would increase by roughly $32.6 billion, resulting in the creation of approximately 140,000 net new jobs (and 284,000 job years) over that period.” [Economic Policy Institute, 3/13/13]

Congressman Rigell Voted Against Considering Replacing Sequestration with a Balanced Approach. In 2013, Rigell voted against considering the Stop the Sequester Job Loss Now Act, which would replace the entire sequester for the remainder of fiscal year 2013. “That measure would eliminate subsidies to the farm industry, scrap tax preferences used by oil-and-gas companies and implement a new minimum tax rate on people making seven figures annually — the proposal commonly known as the ‘Buffett Rule.’” A vote against the motion would have allowed for consideration of the sequester replacement bill. [H Res 352, Vote #472, 9/19/13; The Hill, 2/11/13]

Congressman Rigell Voted Sixteen Times Against Efforts to Re-Open the Government. Following the government shutdown, Rigell voted sixteen times against efforts to vote on a clean government funding resolution by allowing consideration of the Senate-passed continuing resolution. Of these votes, the New York Times wrote: “So far, however, there has been little tangible headway. Part of the problem is that moderates are behaving a bit too moderately. They have yet to vote with Democrats on procedural maneuvers that could force the hand of the Republican leadership or to sign a petition Democrats are circulating that would require a vote on a short-term spending bill to reopen the government if a majority of House members signed. They are unwilling to defy their leaders to that extent.” [H Res 370, Vote #509, 10/02/13; HJ Res 70, Vote #512, 10/02/13; HR 3230, Vote #515, 10/03/13; HJ Res 72, Vote #517, 10/03/13; H Res 371, Vote #519, 10/04/13; HJ Res 85, Vote #521, 10/04/13; HJ Res 75, Vote #523, 10/04/13; H J Res 77,  Vote #527, 10/7/13; HJ Res 84, Vote #529, 10/08/13; H Res 373, Vote #531, 10/08/13; HR 3273, Vote #533, 10/08/13; HJ Res 90, Vote #536, 10/09/13; HJ Res 79, Vote #539, 10/10/13; HJ Res 76, Vote #541, 10/11/13; HJ Res 380, Vote #543, 10/11/13; HJ Res 80, Vote #547, 10/14/13; New York Times, 10/07/13]