Campaign 2010

Jun 28, 2006

Will the Real Jim Walsh Please Stand Up?

DCCC Press

Jun 28, 2006

Will the Real Jim Walsh Please Stand Up?

Despite Claims of Independence, Walsh Chooses Party Loyalty Over New York Families in Voting Against Minimum Wag Increase

91% Amount Jim Walsh votes with Republicans

88% Amount Jim Walsh votes with George Bush

When the vote to ensure a minimum wage for hardworking Americans came up today, Jim Walsh voted with his party and against the interests of his constituents in upstate New York.

The amendment passed last time it was offered but this time failed, partly because Walsh voted for it before he voted against it.

(Washington, D.C.) – Democrats today asked Jim Walsh to explain why he voted along party lines against an amendment to ensure a minimum wage for New York workers and their families. The minimum wage amendment, which has passed the committee previously, failed this time, partially as a result of Walsh’s profile in cowardice.

“Jim Walsh’s vote against the minimum wage just shows that he cares more about his allegiance to George W. Bush’s failed agenda than he does about New York workers struggling to get by,” said Bill Burton, communications director for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “Despite his claims to be independent, Jim Walsh sided with his party leadership over the thousands of New York working families who need a higher wage in order to make ends meet.”

The amendment, just voted down in the appropriations committee on which Walsh sits, would have raised the Federal minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25. The minimum wage in New York State stands at $6.75 and would go up to $7.15 next year. It has been nine years since the last increase in the minimum wage, the second longest period since it was enacted. In 2003 there were 3.7 million Americans who worked full-time, year-round, and still lived in poverty.

Walsh Flip-Flops, Votes Against Minimum Wage. Yesterday’s vote against the minimum wage was on an amendment offered by Rep. David Obey. This follows Walsh's earlier vote where he actually supported raising the minimum wage under an amendment offered by House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer. Hoyer's amendment, which Walsh supported, was added last week to the Labor, Health and Human Services appropriations bill and called for a three-step increase in the Federal minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25 per hour over the next two years. The amendment is expected to directly benefit 7.3 million workers and indirectly help another 8.2 million workers. The minimum wage has been left untouched for 9 years and when inflation is taken into account, today’s level is the lowest in 50 years.