How many times will these ignoramouses (ingorami?) embarrass Missouri? Let me count the national blogs that found the level of ignorance – or contempt – displayed by these sterling representatives of the Grand Old (tea)Party of interest (and the roundup below reflects only those I encountered while casually browsing):
Missouri’s Republican Senate candidates may not know what the minimum wage is, but they’re in agreement on one thing: It shouldn’t be raised …
Apparently one good way to remain competitive in some GOP primaries is to urinate on the minimum wage, by casting it either as a case of Big Government run amok or as a key cause of our economic woes. …
Amanda Terkel at the Huffington Post was amused by the general level of ignorance, but also noted that Todd Akin’s failure to grasp the essentials was particularly egregious since, he:
… as a congressman, is currently responsible for helping to set federal policy.
The federal minimum wage (and Missouri’s minimum wage) is $7.25 per hour. Certainly all three should know the wage level at which four million American workers are at or below. Akin, especially, should know, since in 2007 he voted against raising the minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25.
But the really perceptive observation in the Think Progress piece is the observation that:
Perhaps explaining their ignorance of the current minimum wage is the fact that none of the three candidates personally live anywhere near it. Akin owns two homes and receives an annual congressional salary of $174,000. Steelman has donated upwards of $400,000 to her own Senate campaign. Brunner tops them all, sporting a net worth of approximately $100 million.
Talking Poings Memo seemed especially struck with the ideological rigidity of Todd Akin who ignores
pragmatics pragmatic considerations in order to offer up a particularly inept version of the party line – TPM also reproduces his typically addled syntax verbatim:
… We have a government that whenever any government says we have to spend this much for this product or that product or you’ve got to pay this wage or whatever, that’s basically government control of the marketplace. It always its destructive and disruptive.
The three Republicans vying for a shot at Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill went 0-for-3 in being able to name the federal minimum wage during a St. Louis radio debate Friday.
The fact that a senatorial primary debate in Missouri generates so much noise and has so much reach is significant. To return to Greg Sargent, who aptly sums up the implications of the gaffe:
In the Missouri Senate race, which is going to be a tough one for McCaskill, the GOP candidates’ declarations on the minimum wage today could become a major issue. Dems will cast the statements as the latest example of Republicans being beholden to corporate benefactors, and skapegoating [sic] people on the lowest rungs of the income ladder for our continued economic suffering. Given that the issue will likely be key in other campaigns and even in the presiential [sic] race, how this argument fares in a red-leaning state will be a key test case worth watching.