The Corner

O’Malley on Raising Wages: We Need to Legalize the 11 Million Illegals

At tonight’s CNN presidential forum, Martin O’Malley unveiled a five point plan for creating jobs and raising wages: hike the minimum wage, create new rules mandating overtime pay, pass a new “equal pay” law, “make it easier for people to join labor unions,” and get the ”11 million of our neighbors out of the underground shadow economy by passing comprehensive immigration perform — get a pathway to citizenship.”

He also said Americans “are the only species on the planet without full employment.”

Here’s his full description of the plan: 

PLUMMER: Do you have any specific plans to grow be the economy at a rate that will increase job growth for those, so that nose who are long-term unemployed or fallen out of the workforce will have an opportunity to get back in?

O’MALLEY: Sure. Yes. Let me talk about our economy. Prior to President Obama’s good work, and he’s done great work, saved us from a second great depression, from the recklessness and greed on Wall Street, our nation’s creating jobs again, and we’re the only species on the planet without full employment. So, jobs are important, right? Without jobs, nothing works well. Here’s another thing that doesn’t work well in America, unless it’s going in the right direction. And that is wages. For the first time this side of World War II, 70 percent of us are earning the same or less than 12 years ago. So, as I look at this, I believe that we need to first and foremost remember that our economy is not money. It is people. It is all of our people. And we need to restore common sense wage and labor policies that make wages rise again. Things we used to do, Democrats and Republicans together, all the time, like keeping the minimum wage above the poverty line. Paying overtime pay for overtime work. How about this? The promise of equal pay for equal work for men and women. Making it easier for people to join labor unions instead of harder. And then, here’s another one to make wages go up instead of being a drag on wages, let’s get 11 million of our neighbors out of the underground shadow economy by passing comprehensive immigration perform. Get a pathway to citizenship.

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