Fox's Stuart Varney: Raising The Minimum Wage To $15 Per Hour Is “A Tragedy”

From the July 1 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:

Video file

CLAYTON MORRIS (CO-HOST): I want to talk about the middle class being squeezed, and a lot of business owners, small business owners, scared today. July 1st, minimum wage hike goes into effect in 15 states across this country. Small businesses, I talked to an owner the other day who owns five Subway restaurants. He says, “I am going to have to shut down a couple of my restaurants. I'm going to have to shut them down because I'm only bringing in about 7 percent return on investment and I'm going to have to shut it down.” This is what's happening. 

STUART VARNEY: I think it's a tragedy. In 15 cities, five different states, the new, higher minimum wage goes into effect today, as of July the 1st. The results of this will not be good. First of all, fewer jobs. Have you been into a lot of restaurants recently? You order on a tablet. You don't use wait staff any longer. Entry-level positions are going to be wiped out. You go to, say, $15 an hour. That's $30,000 a year for a standard workweek. Entry-level positions disappear. We will never know the names of those people who will not get a job as an entry level position because of these higher minimum wages, and basically it's politicians trying to legislate higher wages. Vote for me and you'll get a wage raise. 

AINSLEY EARHARDT (CO-HOST): Can I play devil's advocate? Because, don't people deserve, because prices go up, to make a little bit more? And doesn't this weed out the bad people and keep hard workers in there?

VARNEY: I think wages should be set by the marketplace. What is the supply of labor at this price? If you’ve got an adequate supply of labor that that price, wages stay static. And we have an adequate supply of labor at that entry-level position. If, for some reason, there is a shortage of people willing to work at $7 or $8 an hour, then wages will go up. That's the way the market works, that's the way it's supposed to work. But if you start legislating, if a politician says, “you vote for me, and look what I will give you,” that is not good news for the economy or for all individuals. 

TUCKER CARLSON (CO-HOST): They claim they care about wages, but they flood the market with low-end labor. No wonder they’re --

VARNEY: They don't. 11 million illegals? That's a lot of labor to compete with native-born labor. 


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