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U.S. House of Reps approves new minimum wage

WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 02: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), speaks to the media during her weekly news conference on Capitol Hill, December 2, 2016 in Washington, DC. Earlier this week Pelosi won the House Democratic Leadership election, after a challenge from Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH). (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
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The U.S. House of Reps has struck again.

Barely a day after addressing two hot-button issues, the legislative body voted Thursday to increase the US minimum wage to $15 by 2025.

The 231-199 vote fell mostly on party lines and showed that centrist and liberal Democrats can still compromise, the Hill reports.

Liberals won by getting the wage boost passed, while centrists managed to prolong the extension period by an extra year. It’s the first congressional minimum-wage increase since the House voted in 2007 to raise it to $7.25, with a two-year grace period. But the GOP-controlled Senate isn’t expected to approve the current plan.

Yet it shows what Democrats would want if they win the White House and Senate in 2020, the New York Times reports. It also reveals a political shift since fast-food employees began fighting for $15 hourly wages and a union in 2012. Fifteen dollars seemed high to many at the time, but now some communities have adopted it and others are feeling left behind.

“In my district of Milwaukee, Wis., Milwaukeeans are stuck at the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour set over a decade ago,” says Rep. Gwen Moore, a Democrat, who adds that “they are working themselves into poverty.”

The Congressional Budget Office says the new House plan would pull 1.3 million people out of poverty while costing the US 1.3 million jobs.

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