Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) said on Sunday he is focused on raising the “maximum wage” for workers in the Lone Star State.
“Ninety-five percent of all the jobs that were created in my home state were above the minimum wage,” he added. “So, the idea that you should be focused on the minimum wage, when in fact, you should be focused on policies that create this environment where jobs can be created.”
Perry's comments come as the Obama administration and Democratic lawmakers have been pushing a bill that would raise the national minimum wage to $10.10 an hour from the current $7.25. Some states already have minimum wages that are higher than this, but many follow the national standard.
Democrats argue that $7.25 an hour is not a livable wage for many people around the country.
But Perry called it an “easy political line” that distracts from the issue of job creation.
“I think it's an easy political line to pitch out and say, ‘I'm for raising the minimum wage,’ ” Perry said. “We're looking past that in Texas from the standpoint of, ‘How do we create the maximum wage available? How do we put more people into the workforce?’ ”
“Almost a third of all the jobs created in America in the last decade were created in the state of Texas,” he added. “That's where the focus should be.”
Perry said the Obama administration should look to create jobs through more business-friendly tax and regulatory policies.
“The policies that allow for job creation are really pretty simple,” he said. “It's tax policy, it's regulatory policy, it's a legal system that doesn't allow for over suing.”