Study: 95% of Pro-$15 Minimum Wage Lawmakers Don't Pay Their Interns a Dime

Nick Kangadis | August 15, 2017
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When it comes to liberal politicians, the mantra of “do as I say, not as I do” certainly applies to a new study showing that almost all of the politicians championing a $15 minimum wage don’t pay their interns a dime.

The Employment Policies Institute (EPI) recently released a study that says 95 percent of lawmakers who push for minimum wage hikes also hire unpaid interns.

Essentially, these politicians talk a good game, but refuse to back it up with action.

According to the EPI:

In the Senate, Senators Kamala Harris, Chuck Schumer, Cory Booker, Chris Murphy and 20 other cosponsors hire unpaid interns. Of those that do offer a stipend, Senator Bernie Sanders is the only member who pays an hourly wage. However, Senator Sanders’ office only pays interns $12 an hour, short of his $15 proposal. In the House of Representatives, Representatives Nancy Pelosi, Steny Hoyer, Keith Ellison, Maxine Waters and 145 other cosponsors do not pay their interns. Only 9 members from both chambers offer some form of a stipend, representing 5 percent of cosponsors.

EPI notes that when they say 95 percent of pro-minimum wage lawmakers don't pay their interns, that's actually a pretty generous number. EPI took into account internships which “paid either an hourly wage, a flat stipend, or travel/housing stipends” and counted them as paid internships of a kind, so there were gray areas in the study.

While it is widely known that some internships are unpaid, it’s pretty hypocritical to mandate business pay people more money, while not paying the folks who work for you a dime. Internships are valuable in the sense that it gives entry-level workers and college students who might not yet be qualified enough the opportunity to learn in a supporting role.

EPI Managing Director Michael Saltsman echoed those sentiments.

“It’s hypocritical to rally for a $15 minimum wage when these lawmakers don’t pay their own entry level employees a cent,” said Saltsman. “Policymakers might object to paying interns because it will reduce the number of available opportunities, but the same dynamic applies in the private sector, where businesses are forced to cut staff or close down.”

Much like when they exempted themselves from both Obamacare and the illegal practice of insider trading, this "Fight for $15 (just not for our interns)" practice just goes to show how many politicians have only their own best interests at heart.

H/T: Fox News Insider