President Obama will announce during the State of the Union address Tuesday night that he plans to increase minimum wage for new federal contract workers, this according to the White House. (Via The White House)
According to CNN, a White House document released Tuesday says President Obama will issue an executive order that will raise federal contract workers' minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour over the course of three years.
The Wall Street Journal notes the current federal minimum wage hasn't been raised since July 2009, and about 16,000 federal employees were paid minimum wage or less in 2012.
An administration official told Fox News the executive order would apply to all federal government employees and affect more than 2 million people.
The order at least in part addresses an issue at the top of President Obama's agenda — income inequality —, and it also shows Congress he's willing to go around them to get things done.
"We can also expect to hear some very tough talk from the president. Frustrated with the Congress, the president will say he's prepared to bypass members of Congress." (Via WUSA)
The New York Times points out, during last year's State of the Union address, Obama called on Congress to make a federal minimum wage hike happen.
"Let’s declare that in the wealthiest nation on Earth, no one who works full-time should have to live in poverty and raise the federal minimum wage to $9 an hour." (Via The White House)
Despite the positive reaction President Obama got that night, the idea never really took off — with critics arguing it would hurt business and job creation.
President Obama's plan for a minimum wage hike only applies to federal government workers. As CBS notes, a minimum wage increase for all workers would require Congress to act.
President Obama is also expected to discuss immigration reform and extending unemployment benefits, among other issues. The address is scheduled to begin Tuesday at 9 p.m. Eastern time.