President Obama's weekly address Saturday started off with his typical egalitarian rhetoric:
Restoring the idea of opportunity for all requires a year of action from all of us.
Obama is working furiously to garner support for his "$10.10" bill that would raise the national minimum wage. He says:
Wherever I can act on my own, I will. And whenever I can ask more Americans to help, I'll do that too.
The president praised The Gap as a company who followed his State of the Union instruction for businesses to raise wages for employees. The Gap made a decision earlier this week to raise their workers' pay to $9 per hour this year and plans to raise it to $10 by next year. The apparel company says this will help 65,000 of its 90,000 employees. Currently, the hourly pay for a sales associate is $8.85.
With this increase of 15 cents, Obama lists the myriad of ways this will impact workers, including helping pay their bills and spend more at local businesses. So with all that extra money, load up the kids, it's time to go to Disneyworld!
With a straight face, Obama said:
That means, more families will be able to raise their kids.
Allowing companies to make their own decisions for their own businesses is essential for liberty. But the president does not want to leave that in the hands of free Americans. Nor does he want to allow states to make their own decisions. After all, he is the "chief executive":
And as a chief executive myself, that's why I took action last week to lift more workers' wages by requiring federal contractors to pay their employees a fair wage of at least $10.10 an hour.
The president is asking Congress to do more by requiring all businesses to raise their employees wages, not by choice but by the strong arm of executive action. Obama's spin for the bill says it would raise wages for more than 16 million Americans and would not require "a single dollar in new taxes or spending."
Here is his plea:
Only Congress can finish the job and lift American's wages across the country.
Hard working Americans deserve better than 'no.' Let's tell Congress to say, "Yes, pass that bill." Give America a raise. Because here in America, no one who works hard should have to live in poverty. And everyone who works hard should have a chance to get ahead.
Hard working Americans deserve better than force. Because here in America, no one who works hard should have to live under an oppressive government. But that's not what the president said.