Saint Louis, Mo. — Sen. Kurt Schaefer, the Republican seeking the attorney general post in 2016, joined Scott Faughn on This Week In Missouri Politics to discuss, among other things, his latest moves on the minimum wage.
Schaefer played a key role in the passage of HB722, which has a provision that prohibits local municipal governments from raising their minimum wage beyond the state level. In recent weeks, leaders in St. Louis have made it clear they intend to push an increase in the minimum wage anyway, prompting Schaefer to pen a letter to his colleagues in the senate on the legality of the matter.
“It would have a devastating effect on the Missouri economy in general,” Schaefer said. “When you start vulcanizing these minimum wage rates what you get is uncertainty in the market place and further divestment of capital.”
Faughn was joined by the Opinion Maker panel that featured two new guests including, Sean Nicholson, Executive Director of ProgressMO, Rep. John Wiemann, a House Republican, Dave Cook with UFCW local 655, and David Jackson, a lobbyist Gateway Group.
Watch now at TWMP.tv – new episodes can be streamed Sunday at noon.
Some highlights from the show:
“As far as the legal authority goes, there have been lawyers from both St. Louis and Kansas City who have looked at the legal authority for municipalities to set higher floors for wage and benefit standards and attorneys in both places have said this is certainly something that’s legal for municipalities to do.” – Nicholson on raising minimum wage.
“That’s a business decision. Private industry should be making those decisions about what they pay their employees. When government gets involved in deciding how much someone is going to make, you’ve moved away from a free market capitalist system into a socialism, communism attitude when you decide who gets paid what.” – Wiemann, on minimum wage.
“The odds are working against the legislature. With a new Speaker there’s a lot of new dynamics. You’re often better off if you’re trying to keep votes rather than flip votes. It’s going to be hard.” – Jackson on overriding Nixon on RTW.
“Truly, this law is nothing but government overreach. Every single collective bargaining agreement in the state of Missouri today is to decide to be an open shop, right to work, or a closed shop. Why should the government get involved?” – Cook on RTW laws.
Collin Reischman is the Managing Editor for The Missouri Times, and a graduate of Webster University with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. To contact Collin, email email@example.com or via Twitter at @CMReischman