It's true that minimum-wage earners don't all come in one size, said Harry Holzer, a professor of public policy at Georgetown University whose research has focused on the low-wage labor market. "And we know in fact that only about 20 percent of the people who earn the minimum wage live in poor households," he said. Some are younger workers or people bringing in a second-income to a household. A third category are poor single-earners, he added.
Holzer says documented immigrants would bring more money into the U.S. treasury. “They would pay the full range of taxes on their incomes," he explains. "And that would be a net plus. The numbers were quite striking on that.”
Battling for a higher minimum wage would test the Republicans’ newfound love for the salt of the earth. Are they willing to embrace an idea endorsed by seven in 10 Americans? Or do they retreat to Romney’s rhetoric privileging “job creators” over workers?
As the House joins the immigration debate this month, it is essential for its members and all Americans to remember that allowing immigrants to participate fully in our society and economy benefits everyone. Immigration reform has the potential to improve all corners of our economy.
Alice M. Rivlin, the Brookings Institution fellow and former presidential budget director, said “six to eight” candidates are under consideration as the process moves to the interview stage. Rivlin and former mayor Anthony A. Williams are leading the blue-ribbon search committee, which will make recommendations to Gray, who will then select a nominee for D.C. Council confirmation.
Alice Rivlin, Washington’s premier budget expert, has long championed an idea near and dear to the heart of President Obama: A “Grand Bargain” of spending, entitlement and tax agreements that would put the government on a long-term path to economic stability. But after years of partisan gridlock on Capitol Hill, bruising battles over the debt ceiling and taxes, and a gradual improvement in the economy and the deficit picture, Rivlin sees little impetus for a major budget or tax deal later this year.
“The quality of the monitoring and the quality of the managed care really varies from state to state,” said Joan Alker, a co-executive director of the Center on Children and Families at Georgetown University who studies health policy. “This is important because we want to have accountability for our taxpayer dollars. These are very vulnerable populations and sometimes not getting the services they need is a matter of huge import.”