Casey is one of 30 senators co-sponsoring the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2013, which would raise the national minimum wage to $10.10 an hour and set regular increases with inflation.
Casey’s comments come days before the Senate returns from a monthlong recess on Sept. 9. Increasing the minimum wage is a top priority for Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Chairman Tom Harkin (D-Iowa.), who is retiring after 2014, but it is unlikely that his bill will get a vote this year because Congress will be dominated by budget issues in the fall.
Casey argued that families living on the federal minimum wage — now $7.50 an hour — are struggling and living below the poverty line. He said increasing the minimum wage would boost the economy because families would have more purchasing power.
Casey said 8.5 million U.S. parents would receive a raise if the Fair Minimum Wage Act passes.