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Friday
May022014

NHDP - Walt Havenstein Sides Against Working Families, Opposes Raising State's Minimum Wage 

Maryland Multi-Millionaire Doesn't Even Know Tea Party Repealed State Minimum Wage in 2011

 
Concord, NH-- Walt Havenstein has once again demonstrated that he is out of touch with the working men and women of New Hampshire and can't be trusted to stand up for their priorities by coming out against restoring and improving the state's minimum wage. In Havenstein's appearance on WMUR's program Meet the Candidate, the multi-millionaire from Maryland not only made it clear that he opposes the modest increase in the state's minimum wage being considered by the legislature, but acknowledged that he didn't even know that thanks to the O'Brien Tea Party Legislature, New Hampshire does not have a state minimum wage.
 
During the interview Havenstein said of an increase in the state's minimum wage, "I don't think we need to change that minimum wage right now." [Link, 26:43]

Havenstein then went on to argue that New Hampshire has a state minimum wage saying, "Well first of all we have a minimum wage, there is no philosophical discussion about it as far as I'm concerned." [Link, 27:43]
 
"Walt Havenstein has once again shown that he is out of touch with the priorities of New Hampshire working families, opposing a commonsense increase in the minimum wage that would help 76,000 hard working Granite Staters earn enough to afford basic needs and make ends meet," said New Hampshire Democratic Party Press Secretary Lucas Meyer. "It is not surprising that the Maryland multi-millionare continues to side against working families and the 76% of New Hampshire voters who support raising the minimum wage. But what is truly shocking is that Havenstein doesn't even know that his Tea Party friends repealed our state's minimum wage altogether in 2011. Then again, in 2011 Havenstein was living in Maryland, so he must have missed that vote."
 
Background:
 
The bill currently being considered by the Senate, HB 1403, would raise New Hampshire’s minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.25 per hour on January 1, 2015 and then to $9.00 per hour on January 1, 2016. 
 
The affects of this bill would not only produce real gains for thousands low income and hard working Granite Staters, but also benefit businesses across our state. According to an analysis of data from the US Census Bureau's Current Population Survey by the Economic Policy Institute, raising the minimum wage here in New Hampshire would raise the wages both directly and indirectly to nearly 12% of our state's work force. Furthermore, it would improve the well-being of 21,000 children whose mothers and fathers would see a pay raise from this increase. That increase translates to an increase of $860 per year for a worker who would see a raise and an increase in total wages paid in our state to $84 million over two years. That would in turn result in higher demands at supermarkets, local stores, and retails shops across the state.
 
A breakdown of the demographics of who would be affected positively by an increase in the minimum wage reveal that 59% are women, 72% are older than 20, and 65% are adults with real breadwinner responsibilities in a household.
 
Last week, four Republicans on the Senate Finance Committee voted to kill this bill.
 
Bill O'Brien's Tea Party Legislature Abolished New Hampshire's State Minimum Wage: In 2011, Bill O'Brien and his rouge legislature overrode a Governor Lynch veto and abolished our state's minimum wage. [RealClearPolitics, 8/20/11]
 
Granite Staters Overwhelming Support Raising The State Minimum Wage: According to a Concord Monitor report, "The WMUR Granite State Poll conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center finds that 59 percent of residents strongly support the increase; 17 percent somewhat support it." [Concord Monitor, 3/7/14]

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