In the News

If Congress won't raise the federal minimum wage, you can. At least for people who work for companies that get federal contracts, subcontracts and grants.

So says a group of liberals in the House and Senate who want President Obama to sign an executive order requiring federal agencies to give preference in awarding contracts to companies that pay workers no less than $10.10 an hour. [...]

Nomi Prinz is a Nomi Prins is a journalist, author and speaker. She was a managing director at Goldman Sachs, ran the international analytics group as a senior managing director at Bear Stearns in London, and worked as a strategist at Lehman Brothers and an analyst at Chase Manhattan Bank. She is currenty a Senior Fellow at the non-partisan public policy think-tank, Demos.

Jeffrey Steinberg interviewed her on Jan. 8. This is an abridged transcript.

Two liberal civil rights groups say the Affordable Care Act may not be in compliance with a federal voting law and are urging the Obama Administration to change how enrollees are prompted to register with the newly created federal insurance exchanges. [...]

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"I really enjoyed my time at Oberlin and I felt like I was learning, but I wasn't progressing towards a job at the end of graduation," said Ned Lindau, a 2011 graduate from Oberlin College in Ohio. He noted that his liberal arts education focused on students exploring subjects that they were interested in learning, not the practicality of a job after college.

Now liberals are accusing Obamacare of breaking the law. Specifically, the National Voter Registration Act of 1993, which requires public assistance programs to help applicants register to vote.

Some of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s dreams have certainly come true. But when it comes to closing the economic gap between black and white Americans, we've got a long way to go.

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A judge rejected Detroit’s second attempt to resolve one key piece of its unpayable debts on Thursday, saying that a renegotiated deal with two Wall Street banks was still “just too much money.” [...]

Here’s some welcome news. At his meeting with Democratic Senators last night, President Obama indicated that he is giving serious consideration to executive action designed to raise the minimum wage for employees of federal contractors, according to one Senator who was present.

One day after a top Obama administration official deflected a congressman’s call for executive action to raise labor standards for contractors, activists Wednesday announced the filing of a new Department of Labor complaint over alleged wage theft in a government building. The complaint alleges that dozens of workers in D.C.’s government-owned Union Station are owed over $3 million in back pay and damages for rampant failure to pay minimum wage or overtime.

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As the White House prepares to launch a major economic opportunity effort, record high unemployment among black and Latino youth underscores how essential it is to create job opportunities for young people of color. 

The critical issue here is that the ages of 16 to 24 are make or break years for lifelong earning potential. With one out four blacks and one out of six Latinos under the age of 25 without work, a generation of youth of color risks falling behind.