With much fanfare and liberal accolade, Target announced a couple of years ago it was going to raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour by the end of 2020. As you might imagine, this put pressure on other “big box” stores to do the same, as the store began rolling out the new pay structure.

Turns out, it isn’t working as they expected.  

Don’t misunderstand. It’s working exactly as everyone else expected, just not Target.  

CNN Business reports that “some store workers say the wage increases are not helping because their hours are falling, making it difficult to keep their health insurance and in some cases to pay their bills.”

Of course, that’s what happened when Democratic Presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders decided to pay his staffers the $15 minimum wage he’d been telling America was “just.”  Are you surprised he wasn’t already paying this salary, if it’s a matter of justice?  Me either.  Only reluctantly did he agree to pay his staff that amount of money, and – guess what?  – it worked for him about as well as it worked for Target.

After raising salaries and becoming the first Presidential campaign to unionize, things went bad.  According to The Daily Wire:

His campaign’s union contract resulted in a flat annual salary of $36,000 for field staffers. In a normal 40-hour work week, that would pay about $17 per hour. But some staffers say they work up to 60 hours a week, meaning their pay ends up being about $13 per hour.

To combat this, Sanders’ campaign will now limit staffers’ hours to ensure they are paid at least $15 an hour.

“We look forward to continuing those discussions and obviously are disappointed that some individuals decided to damage the integrity of these efforts before they were concluded,” said Sanders campaign manager Faiz Shakir in a statement to Newsweek. “As these discussions continue, we are limiting hours so no employee is receiving less than $15 for any hours worked.”

Shakir also told Newsweek that the campaign had offered to give field organizers a raise — to $42,000 annually, but the offer was rejected because staffers would have had to work six days a week. That salary also would have forced them “to pay more of their own health care costs,” Newsweek reported.

In other words, as much as the Democrats’ rhetoric suggests that this $15 per hour paycheck is “just,” it will not work.  Higher mandatory minimum wage is not sustainable.

Maybe we should all be thankful for Target and the Bernie Sanders campaign for showing us how money doesn’t just appear out of thin air… no matter how much we hope it will.

Hat Tip: CNN Business Image Credit: Mike Mozart on Flickr

About The Author

Mark Meckler

Mark was a co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, and served as the national coordinator. He left the organization to work more broadly on expanding the self-governance movement beyond the partisan divide. Mark appears regularly on television in outlets as diverse as MSNBC, ABC, NBC, Fox News, CNN, Bloomberg, Fox Business and the BBC. He’s highly sought after for the tea party perspective from print and electronic media outlets, from the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, L.A. Times, Washington Examiner, Politico and the The Hill. Mark blogs at MarkMeckler.com, and his opinion editorials regularly run in many of the leading political newspapers both on and offline. Mark has a BA in English from San Diego State University and graduated with honors from University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law in 1988. He practiced real estate and business law for almost a decade. For the last eleven years of his legal career he specialized in Internet advertising law. When not fighting for the future of our nation, Mark is an avid horseman, and lives in rural northern California with his wife Patty and two children.