(CNN) - Senate Republicans on Wednesday blocked a top legislative and political priority of Democrats, a bill to increase the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.
The measure failed to gain enough support in a procedural vote to open debate.
In framing the issue ahead of November's midterm elections, Democrats have portrayed the GOP as insensitive to the needs of low-wage workers.
Polls show a strong majority of Americans surveyed back raising the minimum wage, which currently stands at $7.25.
Even if the Senate had moved ahead with the legislation, there was little chance the House, which is led by Republicans, would have taken it up.
Still, Democrats are vowing to return to the issue, which would boost the wage over time.
"This is an uphill fight, but it isn't over yet," said Sen. Elizabeth Warren after the vote.
We want you to weigh in: Do you think an increase in the minimum wage would cause significant job loss?
Author, documentary filmmaker, historian, Speaker of the House (1995-1999), and 2012 Republican presidential candidate
Fmr. Obama Deputy Campaign Mgr. and W.H. Sr. Adviser, founder of Precision Strategies, fmr. Sr. Adviser to Maj. Leader Reid and Sen. Kennedy
Conservative columnist for New York Daily News, contributing editor at Townhall Magazine, commentator and author
Former Special Adviser for Green Jobs under President Obama, co-founder of Rebuild the Dream, author and attorney