Within the past hour, the newest ballot total count shows the $15-an-hour minimum wage SeaTac initiative has WIDENED its lead — to 53 votes from just 19 a day before, which was a lead that had shrunk — a nice reversal from yesterday’s narrowed vote. And, in my estimation, this means the initiative will now likely come out on top at the end of the count.
Here is the current count as of 4:18 Seattle time:
Yes: 2,837 (50.47%)
No: 2,784 (49.53%)
Another 142 ballots were counted today, leaving probably no more than between 100-150 to count. It would take a huge swing — an unlikely swing — for the anti vote to now overtake the “yes” vote.
I think this is a winner.
As I’ve written in the past few days, though, a recount is probably likely and there is also a lawsuit teed up by the we-prefer-slavery-to-decent-middle-class wages anti-initiative business crowd. So, the fight is far from over.
The initial win, and the campaign around it, can give a great boost to the fight against poverty-level wages. It sets a standard that we need to aim for — a standard that claws back the hard work of people over the past four decades, and the robbery that has continued daily for four decades in the pathetic level of the minimum wage.
It should also serve as a counterpoint to the mediocre proposal by the Democratic Party leadership — in the House, Senate and White House — which is pushing a proposal to up the federal minimum wage t0 $10.10 which is really mediocre:
If someone works 52 weeks a year, 40 hours a week (if they are that “lucky” at a minimum wage job to get that many hours), that adds up to a bit over $21,000 a year.
With no pension. Not a single day off. And probably no decent health care.
That $21,000 is BELOW the federal poverty level for a family of four.
Remember this: the federal minimum wage should be $21.72-an-hour if we factor in productivity, which is a fancy way of saying how hard people have worked.
$15-an-hour should be the bare minimum.
Bumper sticker it.