The following is from interviews conducted by Ray Finger published in the Elmira Star Gazette.
Q: Would you favor or oppose an increase in the federal minimum wage?
A: “I think this is better suited at the state level, first and foremost. When we talk about the minimum wage, I always use the term ‘starting wage.’ … If we talk about a starting wage at the federal level, I’m open to that debate. Don’t know if $10.10 is the right number. That could be debated back and forth. But I do like the idea of giving this to the states because what is a starting wage for Elmira, New York, is much different than a starting wage in Los Angeles, California, would be.” — Tom Reed
Q: What are your thoughts on increasing the federal minimum wage?
A: We need to create wages that could support families. … The federal minimum wage hasn’t moved since 2009. That means real people’s salaries are going down, so they’re having to cut back just to make ends meet. Tom Reed has voted to block pay equity for women. That means he’s voted for discrimination. He’s voted to say that it’s OK that women make 77 cents on the dollar compared to men. So many women are supporting children by themselves, supporting families by themselves. Actually, two-thirds of the people making minimum wage are women. So it’s really a trap, and if women were paid fairly and the minimum wage were increased, we’d really see quite a bit more energy in this environment. … It’s not about anybody getting a handout. People who are working 40 hours a week shouldn’t live in poverty. — Martha Robertson