March 17, 2017 Press Releases

Adam Laxalt on Raising the Minimum Wage: “Do You Like Puppies?”


by Nevada Democrats

Reno, NV – At a business group breakfast in Reno this week, Adam Laxalt reminded Nevadans that he is indeed the most ideologically conservative Attorney General in Nevada history — this time, by using puppies to defend his radical opposition to raising the minimum wage and even the concept of having a minimum wage. The facts are clear that increasing the minimum wage would help our economy and boost paychecks for hundreds of thousands of Nevada workers.

Here are some of the highlights – read the transcript below or listen to the audio here.

  • First: “I’m certainly opposed to raising the minimum wage.”
  • Then: “Until we do a better job of getting that message across, it’s just one of these things where it’s like, ‘Do you like puppies?’ Sure. We all love puppies.”
  • And finally: “Not to mention just philosophically why in the world government can just force a business to pay more money. Seems like that argument isn’t even made anymore.”

 

“Attorney General Laxalt’s right-wing hostility towards raising the minimum wage would be a train wreck for hardworking Nevada families who are already struggling to make ends meet on poverty wages,” said Stewart Boss, spokesperson for the Nevada State Democratic Party. “Puppies have nothing to do with the fact that Laxalt’s ideological opposition to the basic existence of a minimum wage for American workers is alarming and extreme. The most partisan and unethical Attorney General this state has ever seen believes his wealthy donors should be able to pay their workers even less. Laxalt continues to prove just how out of touch he is with Nevadans who actually work for a living.”

TRANSCRIPT

So, yeah, I mean I’m not in a position right now where I’m going to like go into great depth on my policy view. I’m certainly opposed to raising the minimum wage, and I think generally to your point there's a lot of great, practical, real arguments that aren’t made and aren’t made consistently enough. Probably the most significant one is the groups that are being most targeted to benefit for the increase of the minimum wage are actually the ones that are most hurt by the rise of the minimum wage.

So, until we get through to those communities that simply raising the minimum wage three dollars doesn’t mean all the sudden everyone is in great shape. That means X amount of people are going to lose their jobs in that space. It’s just raw numbers. Until we do a better job of getting that message across, it's just one of these things where it’s like, ‘Do you like puppies?’ Sure. We all love puppies.

And I mean that's – there are good jobs. They… Democrats on the other side who push a lot of this change, they get this broad language that is: “Who could be against this?” Whatever it is. And we don’t do a good enough job explaining. There are always so many things underneath this that it’s not just, “Hey it’s just another buck! Who cares? What’s the problem?”

Well, there’s a lot of reasons why the dollar does make a difference. Not to mention just philosophically why in the world government can just force a business to pay more money. Seems like that argument isn’t even made anymore. But there are many more practical, factual arguments to make and we just don’t do it. I mean I think part of that is because the base of our party are our small businesses, and they're folks that just don’t have the time or capacity to just always talk about politics and engage and sell ideas. And as a result, you know, you have one side that has all of these dedicated machines that just push an agenda and push and push and push. You got the media, all these avenues that help push one view.

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