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May 2nd, 2014
09:06 PM ET

Gingrich: too many of our jobs are low-paying

Reps. Barbara Lee and Andy Harris debate raising the minimum wage with Newt Gingrich and Van Jones.

Jones: Give the President some credit on the economy!
Van Jones says the GOP is not giving Obama any credit on the economy, Newt debates.

Gingrich: Sell the Clippers to the fans!
Newt Gingrich argues that the Clippers should be sold to the fans instead of another billionaire.

Jones outraged 200 girls kidnapped by terrorists
Van Jones is outraged that about 200 Nigerian girls have been kidnapped by terrorists and no one seems to care.

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Filed under: Andy Harris • Barbara Lee • CNN Opinion • Debates • economy • Jobs • Middle Class • Minimum wage • Newt Gingrich • Obama • Unemployment • Van Jones
soundoff (30 Responses)
  1. NJD

    And were it not for minimum wage, the jobs would be even lower paying...

    May 5, 2014 at 9:31 pm | Reply
  2. ProtectAmericanJobs

    Obama's Minimum Wage Smokescreen – Wake up people both parties are selling us out – This minimum wage stuff is just meaningless tokenism by the Dems – President Obama was just in the far east. Do you think that he even once brought up anything about the tariffs and protective measures that we need to put in place to protect American jobs and industries or did they just make things even worse by secretly working on pushing through the new disastrous and traitorous TPP "Free Trade" deal?

    Unfortunately we can't just raise the minimum wage unless we start improving the overall business environment and employment picture. Especially not to the $11, $12, or $15 per hour that some of these people were talking about. We can't just pick an arbitrary amount and have it really work.

    We Have To Fix The Root Of The Problem First, which is that over the past several decades, all our leaders have been doing is screwing the American people, by stalling, spending, removing protections and allowing illegal aliens to continue to pour in and American jobs and industry to pour out, and all while collecting their American tax-payer funded pay checks, benefits and whatever else they get on the side from their various lobbyist friends.

    I've been running a business where we haven't been able to our raise prices or wages for several years, because of what our leaders have allowed to happen to our country. Most small to medium size businesses are just struggling to survive.

    Our real economic problems happened because, over the last 25-years, our government has allowed our country's industries to get sucked out to Communist China, India, Mexico, etc and allowed illegal aliens and H-1B foreigners to come into our country and take away tax-paying Americans jobs and drive down wages.

    I run a business with 20 employees, all of whom earn well more than minimum wage, but it isn't so easy. It's hard enough to stay in business and make any profit nowadays and take care of our hard working conscientious employees. I believe that our cross-trained employees are our company's most important asset.

    We have every little turn over in our company. But if I advertise one job opening (all of which are well over the minimum wage), I'd have dozens upon dozens of qualified people and some over qualified people clamoring for the job and almost all of them would be happy to come in for less than they were making, just to have a steady job. But these people and myself are just struggling to keep up with our mortgages, kids student loans, health-care coverage............etc..............

    The American people need our leaders to wake up and start putting some sensible measures in place to stem the tide or this is going to continue to have a devastating effect on the United States of America and the American people.

    We'd really all be better off by just cutting through the all the my team vs your team name calling nonsense and really focus on America and improving the future of the American people.

    We need more Americans, like Perot tried to be, to get some sensible measures put in place to protect America, the American economy and American jobs.

    May 5, 2014 at 3:02 pm | Reply
    • ANGELA

      If the wages stay the same and not rise, than the prices of ALL GOODS INCLUDING RENTS MUST COME DOWN. You cannot expect people to live on minimum wages with prices continually rising on everything. If you raise the minimum wage, than you MUST CAP PRICES so businesses do not increase them. Vicious circle, I know, but someone HAS TO GIVE. With large corporations making enough profits to give their CEO'S and other higher up millions of dollars in bonuses, it stands to reason that the corporations need to STOP RAISING PRODUCT PRICES! Example: Why the hell does a phone bill have to bee $160 per month? We used to pay $25 per month for a home phone. Something is very wrong with this picture, isn't it?

      May 5, 2014 at 3:55 pm | Reply
      • ProtectAmericanJobs

        We need to bring manufacturing back to the United States of America and both parties are ignoring tariffs as a way to level the playing field, raise money and bring jobs back home. Let's guess why. Oh that's right, tariff is a dirty word. Hum, maybe it's that our so called leaders (political leaders) are beholden to the same people who are exporting our jobs.

        I guess we should keep letting Corp Boards, Wall Street, CEOs and Foreign Lobbyists promote sending US jobs to countries where they work for slave wages, no benefits, no OSHA safety standards or no real environment regulations.

        Foreign Lobbyists here in the US promote sending US jobs to countries like Communist China, India and Mexico where they work for slave wages, no benefits, no OSHA safety standards or no real environment regulations. It also doesn't help us compete when many of these Chinese company's factories are subsidized by China's communist government. Just check out the current Chinese extreme pollution issues – We all live in the same world, but not every country plays by the same rules.

        The so called "Global Market Place" is not a level playing field. Companies may have made higher profits by "outsourcing", but they've been putting middle class Americans who are a good part of the world's customer base out of work.

        It has all happened way too fast – Our government leaders should have put measures in place to make it slower, so that it wouldn't devastate our country, which has no chance when competing with other countries that don't play by the same rules or have pay scales that are even remotely close.

        That's where our government leaders have to step up and put some sensible measures and incentives in place to keep jobs here in the USA or the real economy and infrastructure of the country we love will be destroyed along with the future of the American people.

        * Tariffs don't work, if we don't use them. We could have proportionally decreased and monitored them rather than just eliminating them altogether, which just allowed the floodgates to pop wide open.

        * Humm – Let me guess – Oh, here comes the Old Tariffs = Socialism / Trade war BS – * Sorry, they're right removing them has worked out so well for the American People and the Real American Economy. *

        The cold, hard truth is that the unholy alliance between Washington and Wall Street has sold out the American worker and exported our standard of living.

        Driven by the insatiable greed of Wall Street profiteers and accelerated by the false promise of free trade, our manufacturing base has been chased out of this country and along with it the livelihood of millions of hard-working Americans.

        * It used to be fashionable among politicians, pundits and so-called experts to claim that free trade is actually good for us. They say it enables us to buy cheaper goods made with cheap foreign labor and this, in turn, raises our standard of living. (But, if most Americans lose their jobs or are reduced to jobs with much lower pay and little or no benefits, it really doesn't make any sense.)

        * The free traitors need to ask themselves a more fundamental question: How will Americans buy those goods when they don't even have a paycheck that covers their mortgage, much less the college tuition for their children, etc....................?

        Foreigners will be coming here and buying our houses after we all foreclose. They'll also be taking over our government too, after it defaults from lack income tax revenue, due to businesses in the USA shutting down and or US jobs being outsourced and everyone being out of work.

        We need to bring back Glass-Steagall and start standing up to the WTO.

        If Ross Perot had been elected president in 1992, the American people and the American economy would have been much better off today!

        Our leaders need to start remembering that they are elected by the Citizens of the United States of America to represent the interests of those citizens and the country itself. – They are NOT elected by or to represent the Global Market Place, Lobbyist, Foreign citizens or Illegal Aliens!

        The bottom line is that "Our Government" has to protect domestic industry and the jobs that those industries provide. If they do that, the rest will take care of itself.

        We need to add tariffs that are proportionate to the inequities in wages and regulations in the country where the goods were produced and or where we’re importing them from. We could then use the money raised by these tariffs to help companies build state of the art manufacturing plants here in the USA, which would create more jobs here at home for US citizens, which would then in turn increase our income tax revenue.

        The people with all of the excuses as to why we can’t, shouldn't or aren’t willing to manufacture products here in the US are the same people who have provided us with the very same shortsighted thinking that’s gotten us into this mess in the first place.

        Over the past 15-20 years, I've seen too many of our customer's close manufacturing plants here in the USA and move those plants to different countries, decimating entire areas here in OUR COUNTRY. And I'm not alone. Returning jobs to American Citizens will provide income tax revenue to OUR Government versus our government having to pay unemployment benefits to those who would be jobless instead.

        Bringing manufacturing back to the US not only gives jobs to the US citizens who would be working in those manufacturing facilities, but to the people that would be working in the businesses that would spring up all around them. This should also include the safe harvesting, production and distribution of our own natural energy here in the USA, rather than paying for fuel from countries where they hate us. Let’s keep that money and those jobs here in the US.

        And for those that will say that many jobs are being replaced by robotics and automation, you still need people to maintain and service the automated equipment, warehouse personnel, truck drivers to deliver the products, purchasing people to buy the materials, managers, office staff, etc.

        Also, let's manufacture the automated equipment and develop the software to be used for this automated manufacturing, etc. This not only gives jobs to the US citizens who would be working in those manufacturing facilities, but to the people that would be working in the businesses that would spring up all around them.

        Many American jobs have been replaced by automation, but many more have been replaced by "out-sourcing", H-1B workers and non-income-tax-paying illegal aliens here in the USA.

        The ONLY REAL FIX for Our Country is to Raise Revenue by Bringing Back Businesses and Jobs to Tax-Paying American Citizens.

        Returning private sector jobs to American Citizens will provide income tax revenue to OUR Government versus our government having to pay unemployment benefits to those who would be jobless instead. We need our elected officials to Start Protecting American Jobs and do whatever it takes to bring back the jobs they let go. We need leaders who will actually stand up for the American people.

        The “Global Market Place” is not a level playing field! The whole idea of the tariffs is so we can pay our factory workers a decent wage and not be blown out by these other countries where they don’t play by the same rules.

        The bottom line is that “Our Government” has to protect domestic industry and the jobs that those industries provide. If they do that, the rest will take care of itself.

        We may have to pay a bit more for products made here in the USA by US citizens, but at least we'll still have jobs and a future for our children.

        May 5, 2014 at 10:19 pm |
      • ProtectAmericanJobs

        The problem in trying to elect good leaders for The United States of America has nothing to do with the color or gender of our politicians. It's our politician's, from both parties, lack of honesty and the lack of willingness to do right by the US citizens that they're elected by and should be representing.

        Martin Luther King, Jr. was a great American and his march accomplished great things, but now it may be time for a new more all-inclusive march on Washington.

        Almost all of our political leaders' talk is just cheap and meaningless! – When will these people finally wake up and step up with real ideas and real action, instead of just meaningless talk and tokenism? – These idiots have been avoiding action for 2-3 decades.

        As far as I'm concerned this is the bottom line: The ONLY REAL FIX for our great country is to RAISE REVENUE, by Bringing Back Businesses and Jobs to TAX-PAYING AMERICAN CITIZENS.

        This is the only way that Americans are going to be able to "Get a Raise" and sustain it. The more jobs and businesses that we bring back to tax-paying Americans citizens, the healthier our real economy will be and the more likely it will be for the American people to keep up and possibly even start to move forward again.

        Unfortunately most of our politicians are a joke – Only it's not so funny, because over the past several decades, all they've been doing is screwing the American people, by stalling, spending, removing protections and allowing illegal aliens to continue to pour in and American jobs and industry to pour out, and all while collecting their American tax-payer funded pay checks, benefits and whatever else they get on the side from their various lobbyist friends.

        Let's face it both parties are just doing the bidding of their masters, while lamely trying to look like they're trying to represent us. Wouldn't it be nice, if some of these masters were conscientious loyal Americans who loved their country and cared about their fellow Americans enough that they would finally start pointing their lap-dog-politicians in the direction of doing right by the American People? Maybe that's delusional on my part – But if this doesn't start happening soon, the American people and the future of the country that we love is doomed.

        We need more Americans, like Perot tried to be, to get some sensible measures put in place to protect America, the American economy and American jobs.

        May 5, 2014 at 10:22 pm |
      • countingdown

        ProtectAmericanJobs
        As I wrote before, I'm on your side but make your post shorter, no one reads this long winded stuff.

        ANGELA
        " If the wages stay the same and not rise, than the prices of ALL GOODS INCLUDING RENTS MUST COME DOWN. You cannot expect people to live on minimum wages with prices continually rising on everything."

        **You are absolutely correct! We don't expect people to live (permanently) on minimum wage jobs. We expect people to use these jobs to create opportunities for themselves. Rent is a service provide to you by your landlord. When your landlords cost is increased by an increase in minimum wage for services he/she pays to maintain your service, then guess what your rent goes up. DUH!

        "If you raise the minimum wage, than you MUST CAP PRICES so businesses do not increase them."

        **Demand for a product drives business, which provide jobs which increases demand because know there are more people working. Cost drives price for that product. Increase the cost (believe it or not, labor is cost to a business) and cap prices means the business can not survive and there goes the jobs. NOW WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH NO JOB? Elementary economics.

        "Vicious circle, I know, but someone HAS TO GIVE."

        **And who gives, the person who refuses to increase skill for betterment of life, or the person who made that effort already?

        " With large corporations making enough profits to give their CEO'S and other higher up millions of dollars in bonuses, it stands to reason that the corporations need to STOP RAISING PRODUCT PRICES!"

        **Do you think you could run that corporation and maintain tens of thousands of jobs. Not with your view of economics.

        "Example: Why the hell does a phone bill have to bee $160 per month? We used to pay $25 per month for a home phone. Something is very wrong with this picture, isn't it?"

        **Yes! There is something wrong with this picture and it is you and the other you owe me attitudes in this country. You can still use land lines or even wireless home phones for a lot less. How many phones do you have? Don't want to pay $160 pm then give up the convenience of portability and data usage. This is the point many try to make, you get what your willing to pay for or sadly, some people would let their families suffer hardships for unnecessary things. When you work a minimum wage job as a permanent way of life, something has to give (except for the people who demand that the government provides these things, as well as, demanding an increase in minimum wage).

        May 6, 2014 at 2:30 pm |
      • countingdown

        **Demand for a product drives business, which provide jobs which increases demand because know there are more people working.

        Should read **Demand for a product drives business, which provide jobs which increases demand because now there are more people working.

        May 6, 2014 at 6:17 pm |
  3. Judy Zitko

    As for corporations paying high taxes, it's no higher then for earned income at 39%. The difference is that they have more loopholes to reduce their net tax down to an average 11% and 25% of corporations have been paying no federal taxes for the last few years and then they get big refunds from the government. They won't be happy until they all pay no taxes on anything, we have no laws to protect labor or our environment, ensure safe food, water, clean air, etc. They would love to just pollute at will everywhere until this country would not be a fit place to live or work and they can just live somewhere else.

    May 5, 2014 at 2:32 pm | Reply
  4. Judy Zitko

    We have been giving corporations tax breaks since the 80's with the promise that it would "trickle down" to the rest of us. Well, didn't happen. Instead the top execs just paid themselves more and bought more politicians. Republicans and some Democrats want to perpetuate this myth. Our media is corporate controlled so we only hear what their corporate owners want us to hear. Between a non existent media watch dog of Democracy and the Supreme Court giving the elites free reign to fully corrupt our elected reps, we are in deep trouble in this country. I recently read that many Republican voters don't like what their reps are doing but they'll vote Republican anyway? Are they insane? I'm not saying the Democrats are much better, but only about 1/2 have sold out whereas 100% of the Republicans have so we can still push the Democratic party to do the right thing in many cases.

    May 5, 2014 at 2:29 pm | Reply
  5. The ENTIRE GOP PLATFORM in a single paragraph

    The GOP Prayer/Mantra/Solution: Dear God...With your loving kindness, help us to turn all the Old, Sick, Poor, Non-white, Non-christian, Female, and Gay people into slaves. Then, with your guidance and compassion, we will whip them until they are Young, Healthy, Rich, White, Christian, Male, and Straight. Or until they are dead. God...Grant us the knowledge to then turn them into Soylent Green to feed the military during the next "unfunded/off-the-books" war. God...Give us the strength during our speeches to repeatedly yell........TAX CUTS FOR THE RICH!!!..........and........GET RID OF SS AND MEDICARE!!!
    In your name we prey (purposely misspelled, or is it?)........Amen

    May 5, 2014 at 10:59 am | Reply
    • Judy Zitko

      Absolutely perfect. Make a good campaign slogan for a Dem. A Progressive Dem anyway, not a corporate one.

      May 5, 2014 at 2:23 pm | Reply
    • ANGELA

      Excellent.....and of course the Republicans are greatly in favor of this prayer....to be fair......it's not just one side or the other.....it's both being paid off.

      May 5, 2014 at 3:58 pm | Reply
    • countingdown

      Still copy / pasting hate! Poor liberal can't come up something new! Ha, ha, ha. . . . .

      May 6, 2014 at 2:42 pm | Reply
  6. guest

    wait did I just read someone claim america is taxing businesses to the hilt? Where does fox find these people to indoctrinate?

    May 5, 2014 at 10:31 am | Reply
    • George

      So businesses are moving out of country because? Is oliar making this country business friendly, no that is why they are moving to china.

      May 5, 2014 at 11:29 am | Reply
      • CB

        They are moving to China because they can pay workers $3 a day. Corporate taxes are at a 60 year low. Many large corporations actually pay a net zero in taxes, and still offshore jobs. GE is just one example of that.

        May 5, 2014 at 11:55 am |
      • ANGELA

        They have been moving out of this country for MANY YEARS! Way before the current president. Do your homework and get the facts.

        May 5, 2014 at 4:00 pm |
  7. AMuricanJezusFreedum

    The dang COMMUNISTS are trying to make Amurica a dang freemarket economy. That is COMMUNIST!!!!!

    May 5, 2014 at 2:57 am | Reply
  8. Tom Tharp

    I find it strange for a republican to talk about low paying jobs??? I've heard Gingrich extort the virtues of Gov Perry in Texas about the number of jobs he created forgetting to mention that 80% of these new wonderful jobs were low paying or at minimum wage. Mr. Gingrich may be a bit of a hypocrite.

    May 4, 2014 at 9:32 pm | Reply
  9. Bubba

    Seeing an anti-union, pro-import, pro-business, anti-centralized Government Republican Puppet complain about low paying jobs is the hallmark of HYPOCRISY.
    The GOP have done more to lower wages than any group in American history, with the exception of pro-slavery politicians.
    Wages are rising in those places where the crazy Liberals are in charge, and those areas are doing well.

    May 4, 2014 at 2:34 pm | Reply
  10. emskadittle

    well then we need to talk to those "job creators" we have been giving tax breaks to

    May 4, 2014 at 1:53 pm | Reply
  11. BDR

    Congratulation's to mama Gingrich on her foresight in naming her son.

    May 4, 2014 at 4:48 am | Reply
  12. Hector Slagg

    So what,
    That's what too many of the people voted for, for too many years. Now even college educated are having to take minimum paying jobs. The people voted in politicians that decided taxing business to the hilt was the way to go. Many Businesses decided if they wanted to stay in business they had to go off shore. If the system will only pay you so much, you ain't going to get more. California is a prime example. I read Toyota is moving from California to Texas. Live and learn.

    May 3, 2014 at 11:58 am | Reply
  13. jboh

    Yes, and your poliical activites are making it worse. Put your tenth amendment project in your gold toilet, cancer.

    May 3, 2014 at 10:45 am | Reply
  14. kurt

    Yes Newt, when you have income inequality and the "job creators" as you like to call them aren't forced to pay their employees a decent wage... so they just keep the profits to themselves...

    then new jobs end up being low paying.

    You can't have it both ways. Either you let business owners have the freedom to pay their employees poorly and live with low paying jobs being the majority of those created... or you put regulations in place that force them to pay their employees a living wage.

    Businesses exist for maximizing the profit for their owners. Maximizing profit means minimizing expenses, and payroll is the largest expense for many businesses. When you "let the markets decide" what pay is for employees AND you don't allow unionization so that workers can gain power to negotiate for higher wages, you get crappy wages. That's HOW THE FREE MARKET WORKS.

    Don't champion it then complain about it.

    May 3, 2014 at 8:59 am | Reply
    • countingdown

      kurt
      Yes Newt, when you have income inequality and the "job creators" as you like to call them aren't forced to pay their employees adecent wage... so they just keep the profits to themselves... then new jobs end up being low paying.

      **Equality income or otherwise has never can never or will never be achieved. There will always be those who want betterment in life for their families and themselves. In the same token, there will always be people who will wait for somebody else to give it to them.

      You can't have it both ways. Either you let business owners have the freedom to pay their employees poorly and live with low paying jobs being the majority of those created... or you put regulations in place that force them to pay their employees aliving wage.

      **YOU CAN'T HAVE IT BOTH WAYS EITHER, YOU WANT FREEDOM OR YOU WANT SOMETHING ELSE! FOR ME AND MIND I CHOOSE FREEDOM!

      Businesses exist for maximizing the profit for their owners.
      **Businesses exist because people want things that will better their existence.

      Maximizing profit means minimizing expenses, and payroll is the largest expense for many businesses.
      **No kidding, and increase in labor cost expands expense.

      When you "let the markets decide" what pay is for employees AND you don't allow unionization so that workers can gain power to negotiate for higher wages, you get crappy wages. That's HOW THE FREEMARKET WORKS.

      **Power is in skill and knowledge, hence this discussion of low pay and minimum wage. Inflated wages is artificial due to higher than necessary price; which, BTW, increases the cost of living and makes it MORE difficult for UNSKILLED labor.

      Don't champion it then complain about it.

      **If you wait on someone else or the government you will be unable to champion and don't complain if you choose to remain waiting!

      May 6, 2014 at 3:27 pm | Reply
      • countingdown

        didn't proof read before posting MIND should read MINE!

        May 6, 2014 at 3:30 pm |
  15. McShannon

    Low minimum wages, low esteem, low priority and you are right Newt but we could raise minimum wage for starters.

    May 3, 2014 at 7:22 am | Reply
  16. Miguel Serda

    well of course they are, all the good paying jobs were allowed to outsource by September of 2004 while bush and Cheney were in office. I guess that little fact slipped by that fat ass idiots Gingrich's mind. and would they be low paying if the republicans were to pass the minimum wage? I think not! Date: Sat, 3 May 2014 01:06:25 +0000 To: mrserda@hotmail.com

    May 2, 2014 at 9:11 pm | Reply
    • countingdown

      Don't understand outsourcing huh, maybe this will help! As technology grew and demand for more things grew and the population grew so did the need for upgrading business and manufacturing skills and knowledge. Example: in manufacturing you no longer were expected to push a start button and count parts but also apply quality controls make mathematical adjustments to electronic numerical controllers. In business you needed to know and understand computer systems and/or software. However, Americans wanted these things faster than business / manufacturing could provide in skilled labor. So, what do you do, only produce a minimum number of products and keep the cost super high or give the consumer what it wants at a reasonable cost and wait for an increase in skill and knowledge.

      Herein lies the problem, businesses are still waiting, Americans still crave more, the population is still growing and the education system is falling behind and low skilled labor still waits on the government. After the housing bubble implosion in 2008 because democrats wanted to give affordable housing to people who couldn't afford it. 8 million jobs were lost, with millions more entering the work force the first time and (5) Five years of this administration's lack of emphasis on jobs that has created a job deficit and increased the poor me attitude.

      Unless you made an extreme effort to buy 100% American then it is as much your fault and mine as well, because we wouldn't wait. We wanted our stuff now and didn't care where it came from.

      May 6, 2014 at 5:01 pm | Reply

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