The economy of the United States is a massive engine that is the envy of the rest of the world.
Look around District 15 and tell me if you have seen the flood of our nation’s economic capital flowing into any of our local cash registers.
Look around and show me all of the new businesses that are springing up in our community and offering well-paying jobs.
Look around our neighborhoods and tell me how the poorest of the poor are doing in District 15.
It is apparent that for the last six years no one has been fighting for District 15’s economic survival. The result of this neglect is that we have ended up at the far end of the economic dinner table. We sit with our plate outstretched but only receive the leftover scraps from the rest of our nation’s recovery.
Who stands up and encourages economic development and job creation in District 15? Certainly not the incumbent Congressman who chooses to move forward the agenda of the bankers and insurance executives that contributed to his campaign.
Hard working people and unions built this nation and made it what it is today. Our mothers and fathers got up early every day and made the long trip to their workplace so they could provide for their families. They joined unions and stood up for their rights. Sick days, holidays and a living wage were all the results of the hard work and dedication of union workers from days past.
What the corporations and the politicians could not take from the working class directly they have taken over time by legislation and neglect. Our reduced buying power is due to stagnant wages that can’t keep up with inflation and still our politicians do nothing. Our economy sees a negative impact due to corporations moving overseas to pad their bottom line and our current laws encourage them to take advantage of tax loopholes and other legal maneuverings.
Any economic recovery that does not lift up the living standards of the average American worker is not an economic recovery that I would ever be proud of.
One of the ways that the political class has done the work of their corporation masters is by suppressing of the Federal minimum wage and reducing benefits.
In 1965, the Federal minimum wage was $1.25.
In 1965, gasoline was 31 cents a gallon so you could buy four gallons of gas.
The current Florida minimum wage is $8.10 an hour and the federal minimum wage is $7.25 which has not been raised since 2009. That’s 8 years! During that time corporate profits have increased by over 150%!
If the minimum wage grew in line with inflation your 1965 hourly minimum wage would be worth $16.25!
Congress should have ended this political circus act years ago. They could do this by attaching a cost of living rider onto the 1965 and later year minimum wage bills.
I propose that the Congress set a fair Federal minimum wage and make sure it has a cost of living adjustment attached to it.
Who stands up and says that this suppression of the minimum wage is not the way to treat working women and men? Certainly not the incumbent Congressman quietly sitting in his government issued leather chair.
The truth is that District 15’s economic recovery has lagged behind the rest of the United States as well as, the rest of Florida’s districts.
I intend to fight for our share of this new recovery.
My work in Congress will have a positive difference in the lives of the least among us. I will work will work to bring good jobs in District 15.