Senate Democrats have had little success finding agreement among themselves on how much to increase the federal minimum wage.
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By Igor Bobic and Tara Golshan
Sens. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) are in the process of crafting bipartisan legislation to increase the minimum wage, Romney confirmed to HuffPost on Wednesday.
“We’re negotiating a minimum wage proposal which we would ultimately take to our group of 20 and see how they would react to it and go from there,” Romney said, referring to a bipartisan group of 20 senators who are hoping to find ways to make the Senate function better.
The Utah senator declined to share more details about the proposal, including its timeline. A spokesperson for Sinema did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
“I think it’s $11,” Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) said when asked about the measure.
Democrats had hoped to increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour across the board over the next four years through the American Rescue Plan — the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief measure — but hit a major roadblock in the Senate. Democrats pushed their first major piece of legislation through the chamber using a limited budgetary procedure that allowed them to pass it with only a simple majority and thus without the support of a single Republican. But the Senate’s parliamentarian, the body’s chief rules expert, said the minimum wage increase could not be included in a budget bill so it was cut from the legislation.