The politics of increasing Idaho’s minimum wage

Boise State Public RadioSeptember 4, 2013 


    This article is part of the “Bottom Rung” series produced by StateImpact Idaho, a reporting project of Boise State Public Radio and NPR focused on explaining how economic issues affect you.

    StateImpact Idaho has ended. This article is the project’s final contribution to Business Insider. For continued coverage of Idaho’s economy, tune in to KBSX 91.5 FM or visit

As in many states, Idaho’s minimum wage hasn’t changed since 2009, when the hourly minimum was boosted by the federal government.

Back in February, President Obama said in his State of the Union Address that he wants to raise the minimum wage to $9 an hour. Later, Deputy Labor Secretary Seth Harris campaigned to boost support for the idea.

“Those workers will have more money in their pockets,” says Harris, who was acting secretary from January until July after Hilda Solis resigned. “They will turn right around and spend that money in the local grocery store, the local gas station, at the local stationary store to buy school supplies for their kids, to pay rent and utilities. That, in turn, feeds the economy.”

The proposal will be a tough sell to Idaho’s congressional delegation.

Read the full story on the StateImpact Idaho website.

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