The Instigator
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The Contender
Pro (for)
3 Points

Raise the minimum wage

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/8/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,048 times Debate No: 66600
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (0)
Votes (1)




The first round of this debate is acceptance. Just state "I accept" and a sentence why you are for raising the minimum wage.


I accept. Small raises in the US federal minimum wage is beneficial to low wage employees and has never been shown be a financial detriment to the US economy or employers, when spaced out over spans of time.
Debate Round No. 1


What you stated in your opening statement is true. Very small increments will not destroy our economy. That is not reality. In the state I reside in the minimum wage is raising from $8.00 to $8.75 in only one year. Look at what Obama wants to do. "Obama highlighted his own executive order, requiring federal contractors to pay employees at least $10.10 an hour." Is that a slow increment? Is raising it to over 10 dollars small?

Also what you stated is obvious. We must raise the minimum wage to keep up with inflation. The truth is that this is not what the United States is doing.

Why not raise the minimum wage? Simple. Destruction. We have to compete with nations like China. This source states that "Shanghai will rise to $293 per month." Look at this wiki page. China has $2.02 minimum wage. If we raise the minimum wage, we simply cannot maintain and continue to compete with foreign nations. I am not insisting on decreasing the minimum wage whatsoever. The simple truth is that the faster you raise the minimum wage, the easier it is for business owners to decide they do not want to manufacture in America.

Imagine this. A garbage truck driver versus a garbage truck company manager. Almost everyone can drive, it is a skill not requiring much effort or training. That garbage truck driver makes $7.25 (minimum wage). Let's say that the manager makes $10.00 because he went to school, trained, and it is a job that requires experience. If the minimum wage increases to $10.10 like it is being proposed what will be the result? That garbage truck driver bumps up to $10.10 and the manager will have to bump up to around $15.00. Imagine this cycle going on with every single company there is. Since it costs more to pay the workers the expenses will rise. Let's say McDonalds has to raise their MIILLIONS of employees paychecks by the HOUR. That McDouble or Quarter Pounder meal is going to undeniably go up. The cycle will go on and on and on. The American dollar worth will plummet.

Not only would the stores and other companies need to increase their products to a higher rate, but unemployment would be at a huge gain. This proves that raising the minumum wage does just that. Raising it just $1 increases unemployment by 1.48 percent and 747,700 become unemployed and 83,300 jobs lost.

Here is a chart from shows that states with the minimum wage at $7.25 have a 6.4% average unemployment rate while states with the minimum wage above $7.25 have a 7.4% average unemployment rate. That is a 1% difference.

In your following argument I would like you to state some facts on how the minimum wage increase actually produces jobs and growth. Of course it increases the average income, but inflation of product prices will make it completely useless.


You have conceded that raising the minimum wage in "very small increments will not destroy our economy". You stated that the minimum wage in your state is raising from $8 to $8.75 in one year. If this raise in minimum wage was voted on by the voters of your state, then it would go outside your state's constitution to not raise the minimum wage.

I do not know what state you reside in, but $8.75/hr in rural Mississippi, may provide a basic living for one individual working full-time, however, in Manhattan, NY, you'll likely not survive on $8.75.

The current Federal minimum wage is $7.25 and has not been adjusted since 2009. According to , the Federal Minimum wage in 1968 was $1.60, adjusted for inflation would amount to $10.90 per hour. So according to your statement, "we must raise the minimum wage to keep up with inflation", Obama is shorting those federal employees and your state has made a nice first step.

America $7.25, China $2.02/hr, China is communist, the US has a regulated free market. In china the government provides many rations such as food, housing, transportation, healthcare, this all varies depending your status. In America subsidies are minimal and many subsidies are under constant attack by politicians. According to , 2 working adults, with 2 children (with a poverty line of $23,283) would need to earn $51,224 a year to meet the US median living wage. The MIT website states that, " A typical family of four (two working adults, two children) needs to work more than 3 full-time minimum-wage jobs (a 68-hour work week per working adult) to earn a living wage."

The answer to China is not to compete with them on who can keep their wages the lowest. The solution is to place tariffs on China's goods so that we can afford to pay a living wage in this country. China understands that the relationship between us and them is mutually beneficial and China is currently investing heavily in America and our future.

As stated in this article,, and by "the Census Bureau, median household income peaked in 1999 and has steadily declined with only a slight reprieve before the housing bubble burst. Adjusted for inflation, the 2012 US median income was below the 1989 level." Also,, States that "The current environment " just enough economic growth and suppressed wages " has allowed corporate America to churn out record profits, a factor helping to support this year"s big rally in stocks."

I will go so far as to say we should increase minimum wage to $10.10 by next year, but as evidenced by the current protest at fast food chains and big box stores that many families and individuals are finding it difficult enough to survive that they are just like the Doobie Brothers and they're taking it to the streets. I would argue any employer unable raise the minimum wage given to their employees by 75 cents every five years, was not a financially viable business to begin with.
Debate Round No. 2


"You have conceded that raising the minimum wage in "very small increments will not destroy our economy".
What I have stated previously is yes, raising the minimum wage overtime is not bad. What people are proposing today is outrageous.

"The Federal Minimum wage in 1968 was $1.60, adjusted for inflation would amount to $10.90 per hour."
Using the federal minimum wage from 1968 is out of the question. Me saying that we have to raise the minimum wage very slowly to keep up with inflation means that I do not want workers being paid $1.00 or $2.00 an hour with today's economy. I did not state anywhere that I wanted to base our economy off of the year 1968.

Half of your argument has been based off of inflation. You did not once try to denounce the fact that higher minimum wages actually increase unemployment, increase product costs, and put more people into poverty.

I stated earlier that states with higher minimum wages compared to states with lower minimum wages have one percent more unemployment. To put that into numbers look at the United States population. One percent of the over 319 million United States citizens is 3,190,000 people. If the states with lower minimum wages raised them to the states that already had higher minimum wages, this will be the hopeless result.

To add to my argument, raising the minimum wage decreases jobs for teenagers. It greatly affects teenagers because of their job inexperience. This states that " In June 2006, before the 40% increase in the minimum wage, 42.1% of teens age 16 to 19 were employed. By June 2010, after the economic meltdown and the 40% minimum wage increase, only 28.6% of teens age 16 to 19 were employed. A very weak economy and a policy that substantially raised the cost of inexperienced labor decreased teen employment by about one third in just four years.". Raising the minimum wage hurts the inexperienced workers.


According to this article in the economy section of Time Magazine, States with higher minimum wage, actually have faster job growth.

The New York Times states, "Minimum-wage workers are older than they used to be. Their average age is 35, and 88 percent are at least 20 years old. Half are older than 30, and about a third are at least 40."

After thirty-years of stagnant wages, we have to start somewhere.
Debate Round No. 3


As you know, the United States minimum wage is $7.25. Norway has a minimum wage of $16-$24 depending on the age of the person. That is a huge difference. As an example let us look at the price of the McDonalds BigMac with these two countries. Norway's Bigmac costs $7.76 while the United States Big Mac costs $4.80 on average. That price is higher in Norway simply because workers are paid more. Let us look at the price of gasoline per country. Once again Norway has a rediculously high price. It is $9.79 per gallon in Norway and at a $3.69 average in the United States. Let us look at the price of milk. Norway has a price of $2.01 per liter while the United States has a price of $1.01 per liter. The list goes on and on. Apartment costs, cars, and even education all is higher in Norway. Why? Because they must pay their workers more.

As I have stated in my previous arguments the higher the minimum wage the more unemployment. It creates a chain effect that decreases the amount of jobs for new and inexperienced workers in some cases.

Since Norway is such a great example look at the Norwegian currency compared to the United States. 1 USD = 7.36773 NOK. This is simply because they need more money to pay their workers.

To sum up all of my arguments, if the United States continues to raise the minimum wage at such high rates:
- The U.S dollar will be worth less
- Unemployment will increase
- Youth and inexperienced workers will have rapid unemployment
- Products and items used in your everyday life will skyrocket

Thanks for accepting this debate. This has been worth my time.


The only point I would add about European Socialist countries such as Norway is the abundance of social assistance programs in the form of financial, educational, and medical assistance.

As this article in the Encyclopedia of Nations states,"Norway has been a pioneer in the field of social welfare and is often called a welfare state"

I would also like to add that Norway ranks fourth on Business Insiders list of the countries with the highest quality of life, while the US ranked sixth.

I would conclude with this statement from Forbes Magazine, "The United States is a nation in decline. Last year the land of the free and the home of the brave came in 10th place in the annual rankings of World"s Happiest Countries. This year the U.S.A. has slipped to 12th." While Norway ranked number one as the most happiest country on Earth.

Thank you for your time as this was a very enjoyable debate.
Debate Round No. 4
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1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by o0jeannie0o 1 year ago
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: convinced me! a raise in minimum wage would create some company's prices to rise but not all. there is no evidence for all to raise other then inflation.