Warren: Minimum wage hike needed to ‘stop income inequality in America’

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) (Joshua Roberts/Bloomberg)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) on Thursday pushed the need for a minimum wage increase and praised such efforts to "stop income inequality in America."

Appearing on a conference call with former labor secretary Robert Reich hosted by the liberal group Democracy for America, Warren also suggested that the minimum wage could be triple what it currently is, if it kept pace with American workers' output.

"If the minimum wage had kept pace with productivity over the last several years, the minimum wage today would be $22 an hour," said Warren, who was scheduled to be on the call live but wound up recording a message for supporters. "Productivity went up, but wages didn't."

Reich, asked about Warren's figures, suggested the number could indeed be that high.

"I think that Sen. Warren's $22 is certainly defensible, but it's at least $15 an hour," Reich said.

During the call, Reich also suggested that either he or Warren might run for president in 2016 if issues like income inequality aren't addressed.

In her recorded message, Warren praised Reich's efforts on stopping income inequality.

"Bob is a remarkable person who has spent his whole career fighting for issues that we care about -- what's happening to America's families and how we can level the playing field to stop income inequality in America," Warren said.

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix.



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