From my new Bloomberg View column:
Obama presented it as a way to help struggling families: “Americans overwhelmingly agree that no one who works full time should ever have to raise a family in poverty.” That comment provides a misleading picture of who minimum-wage earners are. The White House’s own graphpromoting the idea shows that only 26 percent of minimum-wage earners have kids. Thirty percent either have spouses and no kids or are kids themselves.
Raising the minimum wage is not an effective tool against poverty, either. A 2010 study found that state poverty rates were unaffected by minimum-wage increases. It also found that if the minimum wage were raised to $9.50 an hour from $7.25, only 11 percent of the beneficiaries would be people who live in poor households.