Obama raises minimum wage for federal contractors

first_imgWASHINGTON — After promising for weeks to do so, President Barack Obama on Wednesday signed an executive order raising the minimum wage for federal contractors — but only after wagging his finger at Congress for failing to “give America a raise” by refusing to increase the overall minimum.Surrounded at the White House by people who work for an hourly wage, Obama delivered remarks aimed largely at members of Congress who have ignored his call to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $10.10.“In the wealthiest nation on Earth, nobody who works full time should have to live in poverty — nobody, not here in America,” Obama told a crowd gathered at the White House to witness the signing.“While Congress decides what it’s going to do — and I hope this year, and I’m going to work this year, and urge this year that they actually pass a law — today I’m going to do what I can to help raise working Americans’ wages,” he said.In so doing, Obama put the executive order to its intended use: calling out Congress for inaction.The executive order, which Obama had announced in his State of the Union address and detailed in a series of appearances that followed, is the first unilateral action of the administration’s 2014 strategy of emphasizing moves the president can take on his own. It would require companies that do business with the federal government to pay their workers at least $10.10 per hour.last_img read more