The Instigator
Pro (for)
5 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
0 Points

Minimum Wage Should Not Be Raised

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Post Voting Period
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after 2 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/26/2015 Category: Economics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,327 times Debate No: 78152
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (6)
Votes (2)




I will be arguing for a stable federal minimum wage in the United States. I personally believe that the minimum wage should be abolished altogether, as I believe in almost nonexistent government intervention in business.

However, I am arguing that we should not increase the minimum wage any higher then it already is on a federal basis.

This comes from the fact that Seattle, NYC, LA, and Chicago have all raised their minimum wages to an exorbitant amount, which will eventually end up in loss of jobs and working hours.

First round will be acceptance and an overall statement of your intended debate, as well as any definitions you shall use for your debate. If you feel that a word or sentence is vague, please define it using a common dictionary, and then list the name of that dictionary in your overall debate.

No trolling, no usage of profanity, and all statements that are not opinionated but are not backed up by sources will be looked over, as I will not believe it unless I see a credible source.

Good luck to whomever may accept this debate.


I accept this challenge to debate upon the fact that the minimum wage should be raised. It is unjust in my opinion that millions of the working class will have to partake more than one job to support their families.

I will be arguing on the basis that the last time the federal minimum wage was raised was in 2009. And the fact that numerous citizens will have to survive on meager means from the minimum wage pay.

I acknowledge you for providing this debate so I can provide my opinion on the issue at hand.

Okay, that sums up what I'm gonna do.
Debate Round No. 1


Firstly, thank you for accepting this debate.

Let me start off by stating that the minimum wage was ordained in 1938 at 25 cents per hour, which adjusted for inflation would equal to over $4 today.

Minimum wage jobs are by no means meant as a career. A minimum wage job, for the most part, demands a low skilled worker, which usually equates to the younger population. The very first topic you brought up is the fact that people with families should not be subjected to low pay. These people know willingly that they are making little money, and that they have no skill or education to make more money. They still decide to have a family, and then demand higher wages to fit their inadequate decision making/

Firstly, raising the minimum wage on a federal level would result in the loss of over 500,000 jobs. In an economy that is getting more dependent on the skills of a worker, which almost always equates to their level of education, minimum wage jobs are in decline.

We have technology that can very well replace minimum wage workers, and these machines have already sprung up in cities that have increased their wages tremendously.

Raising minimum wage inadvertently forces small business to cut jobs as well as hours for those that remain. It also drives up prices tremendously, as employers have to pay more money to their workers, which cuts back on overall profit.

The main argument that you can, and that you will make is that people who work these jobs cannot afford necessities. Most "necessities" are created by people who work minimum wage jobs. These products would increase in cost, as the employers have to match wage costs with increased profit. This not only hurts the company, as it creates unnecessary and unwarranted competition that is legislated by a supreme ruling body, but it also hurts the employees.

Private businesses and industry is already raising wages. Many businesses pay more money then the required minimum, such as IKEA, which is a multi-billion dollar company that employs dozens of thousands of people.

It"s not clear that it"s constitutional. The Supreme Court, in its opinion in the 1923 case Adkins v. Children"s Hospital of District of Columbia, made a strong argument that a minimum wage was a violation of the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of contract embedded in the Fifth Amendment"s language about due process and the deprivation of liberty and property: "To the extent that the sum fixed exceeds the fair value of the services rendered, it amounts to a compulsory exaction from the employer for the support of a partially indigent person, for whose condition there rests upon him no peculiar responsibility, and therefore, in effect, arbitrarily shifts to his shoulders a burden which, if it belongs to anybody, belongs to society as a whole."

You talk about people who live in poverty. First, many people who live in poverty do not work, and would thus be unaffected by an increase in the minimum wage. In addition, workers who earn the minimum wage are generally not the primary breadwinners in their households. They are secondary earners " an elderly parent earning some retirement income or a spouse with a part-time job. Or they are young people living with their parents. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that while workers under age 25 make up only about 20% of those who earn hourly wages, they constitute about half of all workers earning the minimum wage or less. Raising the minimum wage is therefore an ineffective anti-poverty proposal.

You see, there is only one argument to make for minimum wage increases, and that is people living in poverty. By increasing wages, which then increases overall income, it would make eligibility for certain programs almost nonexistent.

There is a program here in Chicago, called After School Matters, and it is a charity based program created to compensate poor youths for work that they do.

The most you can make (household) to get accepted is 60,000.

Granted that both parents are working, a minimum wage increase would take away all possibilities into these programs. Not only that, but it would bypass the federal income tax level. People would then make more money, which would force them into paying more in taxes. They would always have to pay more in products, as I mentioned previously.

Social programs such as Medicare and Welfare would become useless, as many would pass the threshold and would not receive any more federal or local benefits.



The value of the minimum wage has dipped drastically, for it hasn't been revised for over six years. However, since then, the prices of many staple goods have skyrocketed; the price of apples went up 16%, bacon 67%, cheddar cheese 21%, coffee 27%, ground beef 39%, and milk 21%.

Minimum wage is just an ideal number, it is not a job. It regulates the lowest employers can pay their workers, and many businesses, such as Walmart, has begun paying their employees $10 an hour. Walmart recognizes what a minuscule increase that would be, and went forward to step up their minimum wages.

People do not plainly decide if they want the six-figure job, or the minimum wage position. It is years and years of cultivation from parents, peers, and generally everyone around where they were brought up. If a child matured in years of poverty, chances are he/she has never seen a position higher than a fast-food restaurant. The Constitution guarantees "Life, Liberty, and Happiness", and two of those unalienable rights has to do with starting a family. Also it is completely untrue that only teens and young adults depend on minimum wages. Raising the minimum wage to $10 would impact over 15 million workers. 4.7 million working moms "would get a raise if we raise it to $10.10." As would 2.6 million working dads for a total of 7 million parents.

The minimum wage has been elevated a copious amount of times in the past, and in "more than half of those instances the unemployment rate actually fell. Over 600 economists signed a letter agreeing that a minimum wage increase doesn"t hurt job creation." Minimum wage has already been raised 23 times. Every time it was raised it was opposed by some few who said "it is going to lose jobs and wreck the economy" which is factually untrue as study after study has proven.

The argument for whether raising minimum wage will decimate small businesses is entirely false. 60% of small businesses argued that their businesses would benefit if we raised the minimum wage. The other 40% can be categorized by this statement Franklin D. Roosevelt said, "No business which depends for existence on paying less than living wages to its workers has any right to continue in this country."

Which brings me to my next point, which is the fact of how minimum wage is below poverty line in this country. If America simply raises its minimum wage to $10.10, it would lift 900,000 people out of poverty. For full time workers earning the federal minimum wage, this bump would give them a raise of over $4,000 dollars " enough to take a family of three out of poverty.

You claim that, "These products would increase in cost, as the employers have to match wage costs with increased profit." Unproven, for the cost of a $16 CD at Walmart would increase by simply one penny, if minimum wage was raised to $10.10.

Almost 70 years ago, the United States Supreme Court unanimously upheld the constitutionality of the federal minimum wage. In United States v. Darby, 312 U.S. 100 (1940), the Supreme Court found that, although the Constitution does not expressly give Congress authority to mandate a federal minimum wage, the Tenth Amendment does not deprive Congress of "authority to resort to all means for the exercise of a granted power which are appropriate and plainly adapted to the permitted end." The Court found that based on Congress"s power to regulate interstate commerce, Congress could enact reasonable legislation in furtherance of its policy of excluding from interstate commerce any goods produced under substandard labor conditions. Thus, the Court held that the federal minimum wage is not unconstitutional.

You say that Americans who live in poverty do not work, not entirely true. However, what is true is the fact that the food stamps program would immensely benefit with a minimum wage raise. By raising the minimum wage to $10.10, it would help 3.5 million Americans get off food stamps. Furthermore, teenagers are not the large factor in minimum wage work. A study finds that half of Americans earning under $10.10 an hour are forced to support themselves on that as their primary source of income.

Earning $10.10 an hour for 40 hours a week, 52 weeks a year, produces a yearly gross income of $21,008. You said, "The most you can make (household) to get accepted is 60,000". Assume there are two parents working, that is still below the criteria for many of the government assistances provided. And if a family is earning around $40,000 a year, there is no reason they should be on welfare.

Also, one last note, the average CEO makes 933 times as much as his employees. If the CEO doesn't buy his fifth vacation home in the Bahamas, perhaps his workers can afford bread for his children. Plus, those employees will in turn spend their money on company goods, and both the CEO and employee will benefit.

Debate Round No. 2


For one, much of your argument is copied directly or altered in some way from your first source. This can be deemed plagiarism.

Nonetheless, allow me to continue on with my rebuttal.

Stating that 600 economists agree will be analogous to global warming. Few scientists state that it is not real, and many state that it is real and man made.

You see, when minimum wage is increased by any percentage, that not only kills job growth in the working class sector, but it also makes it awfully hard for an American company to compete with, let's say, a Chinese company. China has very little regulation on business, which is why they are now becoming the world's best economy. Our GDP growth has actually halted, and it is now going down. Jobs have already been leaving as China devalues their currency and we don't.

It is very difficult to set a fair national minimum wage. "For example, if Des Moines, Iowa, had a minimum wage of $10.10, that would only equal a $4.12 per hour rate when measured by the real costs of working and living in New York City. On the other hand, it would take $24.77 to equal the Des Moines rate." [1]

A study that came out a couple of years ago showed that over 60% of the people in poverty do not work at all. The ones that do work, however, do not work full-time. If you increased minimum wage, it would be exceptionally difficult for any man or woman living in poverty to find a job under any circumstances.

Higher wages will kill wage competition, which is a big part of business. Ideally, if one business pays more then the other, those will flock to that one business.

Like I have stated previously, a raise in minimum wage would destroy jobs throughout. Minimum wage was created for teenagers and college students that were looking to make some money on the side. It was no means meant for adults with families.

If you are stupid and lazy and are working at McDonalds, that is primarily your fault; but, I digress.

Not only will it hurt jobs, but it is a direct government legislation of the freedom of contract.

"He argues that if even the most basic of jobs were able to support individuals without any additional effort or improvement, there would be no incentives for many to endure the effort to rise above their position. In other words, the low compensation should serve as an incentive to progress and a disincentive to accept the status quo." [1]

The higher prices that come with a minimum wage increase hurt the lower classes tremendously. Prices have doubled in cities across the nation, including Chicago, as their minimum wage increased.

Minimum wage is regional. If you have lots of poverty in one city and many minimum wage jobs, then maybe it would be smart to raise it. But on a federal level, you would effectively be legislating dozens of millions of jobs that do not need unnecessary legislative action.

A federal minimum wage of $10.10 would destroy over 500,000 jobs; a federal minimum wage of $10.10 would effectively force most local businesses out of business and would force almost every single industrial sector job into a different nation, such as China.

Also, I just do not see that 10 or even 15 dollars is a deserving compensation for someone loading groceries or flipping burgers and taking orders. If everything is guaranteed by the government and then given to you, there will be no need to improve.

Additionally, let me add that some college jobs make $13 an hour as starting salary. If minimum wage is increased, you would have to bump every single job in total to compensate as a form of competition as well as price increases. I would certainly not go to college to make $13 an hour when I could be making 15 without any education. It would make college almost useless, because if you can live with a certain wage, you will be content with that wage.



Sorry about the delay in posting, the site went down for maintenance or something this morning. So here we go now.

Whenever a minimum wage is set, it imposes no cost to the rest of us, the taxpayers. It is the businesses that absorb it, who will oppose it in the beginning, but then see that sales have gone up tremendously. That is because giving money to our people will in turn create a stronger economy. Americans will spend their increased income on housing, food, electricity etc., and companies of all kind will experience a surge in business.

Of the 28 million Americans who would benefit from a federal wage raise, a portion of the group would include adults who are either married or with kids. Here is a run-through of the proportions: "3.4 million under 18, 4.6 million married with kids, 2.8 million married with kids, 4.9 married without kids, 12.4 adults not married without kids."

The value of the minimum wage is also greatly decreasing, another reason of why we should propose a raise. Not only has it dropped by a third since 1968, but we observe great increases in everything else. College fees have shot up, basic necessities for survival are being overpriced, and our landlords haven't decreased our rent or anything. Basically, it is physically impossible to survive on the minimum wage, and our growing prices haven't aided in the welfare of our Americans.

Speaking of welfare, when working multiple minimum waged jobs becomes extremely persistent and agitating, many citizens might turn to government assistance programs, like food stamps, medicaid etc. As of now, 52% of fast-food workers have to rely on food stamps, therefore costing our government the taxpayer's money. If we simply increased the wage a tad bit, than these welfare receivers will stop riding of the system. And plus, the amount of money in food stamps going to fast-food workers tallies to $1.04 billion dollars. That money could've been spent on schools, community buildings, or just back to the people.

The argument as to as if whether the federal wage increase will harm the job openings in America is a myth. These companies need their workers to service customers. And if customers on average spends $2,800 extra for every dollar of wage increase, those companies would receive more purchases. As I've said before, this increases will create money cycle, thus improving our economy.

Minimum wage was not created for teenagers and college students, it was for everyone who happens to not be able to find a higher job position. Not everyone has the luxury of going to college, and even some who do complete college will find themselves at a restaurant working for minimum wage. There is something called being laid off, and when that happens to someone, they will take up a job at a local store for minimum wage just to support their family.

When someone starts at minimum wages, they typically do not get raises at large corporations such as McDonalds. The Fair Labor Standards Act claims that the people working for minimum wage are not entitled to vacation, rest periods, premium pay for holiday work, pay raises, or a reason to terminate employees. The laws around the minimum wage are not beneficial to the employee after all, due to the fact that they have no lobbyists and negotiators.

Another example of why the federal wage is not mainly for teenagers and college students is this rule in the FLSA; the youth minimum wage for anyone under 20 is $4.25 for the first 90 days. This allows the companies the opportunity to cut pay (a.k.a cheat) a youth literally out of three months of pay.

Even fast-food managers are only paid slightly higher than their employees. A federal wage raise to $10.10 would even benefit them also, since their wage's would be raised to the federal minimum wage, plus higher to account for the slight increase between workers and managers. In short, everyone would receive a raise in some way.

When workers struggle to make ends meet, productivity sags, absenteeism increases, morale suffers and turnover rises because workers are constantly hunting for better opportunities. When workers have less money to spend in the markets, companies also suffer because no one is buying their products. During the last 45 years, many middle class and lower class citizens are not as entitled because their wages have been lobbied away by the big companies who want profits to themselves.

If we as a country raised our minimum wages to $10.10, we would witness significant growths at all fronts. From the lives of the workers themselves, to the increase in business for companies, it makes considerable sense we go for a federal minimum wage raise. It assists all people of this country.

Whenever the minimum wage is raised, virtually all jobs will see an escalation in pay. When jobs that do not require collegiate education receive a raise, those that do also will witness the same increase. That undermines your argument of how Americans wouldn't be as motivated to attend university.

Thank you for this debate, and this opportunity to express my views on the raising the federal minimum wage.

Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by Carllju98 2 years ago
I am against raising minimum wage because it will put graduates or more experienced workers out of work just to let those to lazy to complete a degree to have enough money to live a life like everyone else. There will be fewer jobs available for future graduates or those who seek to change their current job.

To add to that, the average price level will also increase because the firms (who will have higher fixed costs due to the raised minimum wage) will have to raise prices in order to maintain profits.
Posted by whiteflame 2 years ago
>Reported vote: RepublitariansUnite// Mod action: Removed<

7 points to Pro. Reasons for voting decision: Damn crook. You went out and rekt him.

[*Reason for removal*] (1) None of the point allocations are explained to any degree. Merely stating that one side "rekt" the other does not explicate any of the reasoning behind those points. The voter must point to specific arguments to explain their decision.
Posted by bballcrook21 2 years ago
Being tired is not a reasonable excuse for plagiarism. This is quite a serious offence on this site, and the consequences for plagiarism in the real world are much more severe. Your argument cannot be copied from a source nor can it be reworded with the same ideal. You do not have to copy directly for it to be plagiarism, you also cannot just change someone else's wording and call it your own.

I do have to say, however, that I find you to be quite a meticulous debater. It was quite the pleasure to debate this topic with you, and I want you to know that the only repercussions will be people ultimately voting in my favor, at least for the argument part.

Good luck on your future debates!
Posted by Brian1813 2 years ago
During my last debate, yes, one sentence was copied from an online source. However, I did elaborate and make the statement more apparent to the reader, so I take credit for that.

But what can I say, it was getting late, and I was in haste to go to sleep lol.
Posted by bballcrook21 2 years ago
I have read your last debate remark, and let me just say that you are quite good at plagiarizing. All I had to do was copy and paste one sentence of your argument into google, and here come up sources where you copied the argument word by word. If you cannot formulate your own opinion about the economic fallacies of increasing the minimum wage, then please excuse yourself from There is no reason that you should be copying other people's words directly without any sourcing.

I would have accepted it if you put sources, but you did not. The reason why this was easy to check was because some paragraphs were phrased and structured articulately while others lacked thereof.

Here is the link to one of the sources you copied directly from:
Posted by Alpha3141 2 years ago
But I need more money xD
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by cathaystewie 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Upon inspecting the link PRO posted in the comments, I realise that I cannot take CON's arguments into consideration albeit the good line of logic he/she has to substantiate his/her case. For the same reason, conduct goes to PRO.
Vote Placed by PericIes 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Conduct goes to Pro for Con's plagiarism.