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October 09, 2014

28 .... *Million* People!!!

Ladies and gentlemen, once again we bring you the deeply complex, yet endearingly folksy verbal stylings of The Vice President of these United States. Not since the Common Core has math been so accessible to The (little) People!


Another day, another Vice President Joe Biden gaffe.

Biden overstated the positive impact of raising the federal minimum wage to $10.10 by more than 3,000 percent Tuesday, Roll Call reports.

The vice president visited Los Angeles Tuesday as part of his six-city tour to discuss the administration’s push for a higher minimum wage. But Biden seemingly confused his talking points.

“If we raise the minimum wage nationally to $10.10, that takes 28 million people out of poverty. 28 million people out of poverty,” Biden declared.

For those of you at home who do not understand The New Math, that adds up to [furiously working calculator....] 28 MILLION PEOPLE.

The White House has only officially claimed that increasing the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour would give 28 million people a raise, not lift them above the poverty line.

In fact, Biden’s statement is a whopping 3,100 percent more than the estimates by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office statement on the effects of a minimum wage increase.

“Real income would increase, on net, by $5 billion for families whose income will be below the poverty threshold under current law, boosting their average family income by about 3 percent and moving about 900,000 people, on net, above the poverty threshold (out of the roughly 45 million people who are projected to be below that threshold under current law),” the CBO report stated.

The White House and Biden himself have had a more generous outlook, Roll Call reported. The Obama administration has been touting a “more than 2 million” figure for the amount of people lifting themselves out of poverty.

900 thousand, 28 million, 2 million... what difference does it make? The point is that the President can't afford to wait for Congress to act. Quibbling over a few million here, errors of a few thousand percent there is unconscionable. You know, kind of like flinging gasoline on an already raging fire and expecting good results.

We just wish those horrid Republicans would stop their incessant fear mongering and be honest with the American people:

The administration has been on thin ice with some of its claims about the impact of the sequestration cuts. Duncan’s assertion that “as many as 40,000 teachers could lose their jobs” also appears to be hyperbole.

An aide to Duncan described it as a “rough back-of-the-envelope calculation,” derived by dividing the average pay and benefits of a teacher — $70,000 — by the amount — $2.8 billion — that needed to be cut in education programs.

But that amounts to false precision. Teacher salaries vary greatly across the nation, and within districts. School districts and states may find many ways to juggle funds or reduce expenses to avoid losing many teachers, which is what has happened during previous periods of financial stress.

The American Association of School Administrators this week released a report, based on a survey, that estimates that “at least 37,000 education jobs” would be lost through sequestration. That at least is based on something more than a rough calculation, though of course it is in the interest of this group to sound the alarm.

Moreover, note that the group refers to “education jobs,” not teachers. We have previously found that 67 percent of education jobs could be broadly defined as being held by teachers or teaching assistants. That would translate into a reduction of about 25,000 teachers, based on AASA’s survey data.

All we have to say is, thank Gaia that The Smart People are finally reforming the education system to produce the skills needed so desperately on Capitol Hill:


GO Math!!!!

Posted by Cassandra at October 9, 2014 08:28 AM

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Hello? Did you forget that Joe Biden is a lawyer? Lawyers became lawyers because we can't do math.
The question is whether 28 million is a reasonable estimation of the number of persons that would be lifted out of poverty by raising the minimum wage to $10.10, to which I respond: "It depends!"

For example, if we raised the minimum wage to $10.10 in Monaco nobody would be lifted out of poverty. On the other hand,at least 478 million people would be lifted out of poverty were we to do the same thing in China! You may hate Chinese people, but Joe Biden doesn't.

Posted by: spd rdr at October 9, 2014 11:09 AM

You may hate Chinese people, but Joe Biden doesn't.

Well OF COURSE he doesn't, knuckle dragging peasant. As everyone knows, China is part of North America!

Posted by: Valerie Jarrett at October 9, 2014 11:15 AM

I get a lot of answers by talking in my brain, then agreeing with the answer that my brain got. I think Joe Biden talks in another area of his body, then quarrels with it.

Posted by: Texan99 at October 9, 2014 11:36 AM

The kid got it wrong.

Once we spend our way into utopia, cars will be obsolete. The correct answer is: what societal wrecker put cars on the road?

Posted by: Allen at October 9, 2014 11:37 AM

Excuse me? Did Joe Biden say: “If we raise the minimum wage nationally in North America to $10.10, that takes 28 million North American people out of poverty in North America. 28 million North American people out of poverty in North America." Is that what Joe Biden said, or does putting words into Joe Biden's mouth somehow make you feel superior to those in poverty, particularly poor women and minorities who also happen to be Chinese? Yes or no?

Posted by: spd rdr at October 9, 2014 11:50 AM

Surprisingly, no one will be lifted out of poverty by raising the "minimum wage". But I am sure that some people now working will lose their jobs.

But then again, it depends how you define "poverty".

Posted by: Don Brouhaha at October 10, 2014 01:41 PM