Washington, D.C. — Issues central to the lives of working- and middle-class Americans—including the minimum wage and equal pay—were front and center in the 2014 elections. A new post-election memo from the Center for American Progress Action Fund and the National Employment Law Project, or NELP, Action Fund outlines how major wins on progressive ballot initiatives—including a clean sweep of the ballot initiatives for minimum-wage increases in Arkansas, Alaska, Illinois, South Dakota, and Nebraska—demonstrate widespread support for policies and values that benefit hardworking, middle-class Americans. The memo also explores how this broad-based support will play out as the country looks toward the 2016 elections.
“Poll after poll has shown that raising the minimum wage is enormously popular across the country. Now, voters in five states, including four red states, have endorsed initiatives to boost wages for workers,” said Anna Chu, Director of Middle-Out Economics at the Center for American Progress Action Fund. “It’s clear that Americans want an economy that works for everyone—an economy in which nobody who works hard for a living, 40 hours per week, 52 weeks per year, has to live in poverty. Big wins on ballot initiatives about the minimum wage and paid sick leave are a signal that progressive issues are only going to grow in importance as we look toward the 2016 elections and the next presidential election.”
“Exit polls show that nearly 2 in 3 voters believe our economic system favors the wealthy. Raising the minimum wage is a key plank of any program to bring our economy back into balance. Ordinary Americans understand this intuitively, and that’s why they continue to vote in droves to raise pay,” said Arun Ivatury, senior campaign strategist at the NELP Action Fund.
Earlier today, Chu and Ivatury joined SEIU President Mary Kay Henry, Americans United for Change President Brad Woodhouse and Public Policy Polling Director Tom Jensen on a press call to discuss how minimum wage, paid sick leave, and other core economic issues played a pivotal role on election night. Click here to listen to audio of the call.
Read the full memo here.
For more information, please contact Allison Preiss at 202.478.6331 or email@example.com.