D.C. Council Targets Wal-Mart With “Living Wage” Bill

Wal-Mart has long been in the crosshairs of Democrats, mostly because Wal-Mart refuses to allow unionization, along with its employees constantly voting against unionization. They let that hatred override the fact that Wal-Mart employees lots and lots of people, many of whom move up within the company. The D.C. council is no exception

(Washington Post) D.C. lawmakers gave final approval Wednesday to a bill requiring some large retailers to pay their employees a 50 percent premium over the city’s minimum wage, a day after Wal-Mart warned that the law would jeopardize its plans in the city.

The retail giant had linked the future of at least three planned stores in the District to the proposal. But its ultimatum did not change any legislators’ minds. The 8 to 5 roll call matched the outcome of an earlier vote on the matter, taken before Wal-Mart’s warning.

“The question here is a living wage; it’s not whether Wal-Mart comes or stays,” said council member Vincent B. Orange (D-At Large), a lead backer of the legislation, who added that the city did not need to kowtow to threats. “We’re at a point where we don’t need retailers. Retailers need us.”

Wal-Mart had pretty much stated that they will not build any stores in D.C. if the council passed this legislation, which was meant to specifically target Wal-Mart. Said stores were going to be build in the poorest areas, ie, slums, of D.C. No other companies will be really required to provide the higher minimum wage

The D.C. Council bill would require retailers with corporate sales of $1 billion or more and operating in spaces 75,000 square feet or larger to pay their employees no less than $12.50 an hour. The city’s minimum wage is $8.25.

While the bill would apply to some other retailers – such as Home Depot, Costco and Macy’s – a grandfather period and an exception for those with unionized workforces made it clear that the bill targets Wal-Mart, which has said it would open six stores, employing up to 1,800 people.

This violates the equal treatment under the law provisions of city code, as well as federal code (the law must pass a congressional review period). As DrewM points out

At some point you’d think liberals would learn a basic fact: wages are a reflection of how much an employer has to pay to get workers of a certain level of quality. Wages are not charity handed out to enable workers to live at a certain level. You want to make more money? Great, make yourself more valuable to an employer. But that’s too hard for too many hardcore Democratic voters so they want the state to impose an acceptable wage level on employers unrelated to their actual worth.

Wal-Mart would have provided lots and lots of jobs, and since so many of their new stores are superstores with fresh produce, would have given these poor citizens access to better food at low prices. And jobs. Did I mention jobs? Democrats care more about their politics than people.

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.

Leave a Comment

Share this!

Enjoy reading? Share it with your friends!

Send this to a friend