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Union boss paid $154 an hour pushes for minimum wage hike

Studies have shown minimum wage hikes reduce employment among young, unskilled workers.

This article originally appeared on watchdog.org.

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka is pushing for a $10.10 federal minimum wage as a show of union support for low-income workers, but Trumka is paid 15 times that amount.

Based on AFL-CIO‚??s¬†annual report to the U.S. Department of Labor, the union coalition¬†paid¬†Trumka¬†a gross salary of $272,250 plus $49,881 in other disbursements during its¬†2014 fiscal year ending June 30. Trumka‚??s total pay of $322,131 was¬†the equivalent of a $154.87 hourly wage.

‚??Working people will turn out for candidates who support solutions that will make a difference in the real world ‚?? from raising the minimum wage to ensuring that all workers can bargain collectively and make a livable wage,‚?Ě Trumka said in¬†an Oct. 8 statement.

Trumka‚??s own thoroughly¬†livable wage is paid for with money taken from workers in AFL-CIO member unions. Many of those unions, including American Federation of Teachers and American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees,¬†take dues and mandatory fees from taxpayer-funded public employees.

AFL-CIO didn‚??t respond to a Watchdog.org request for comment on¬†Trumka‚??s compensation.

On Twitter, Trumka¬†expressed his support¬†for¬†a¬†federal minimum wage hike using a hashtag¬†popularized by President Obama‚??s Organizing for Action:

We stand in strong support of the broad campaign to leading up to & following 10/10, & its our responsibility to keep it going

AFL-CIO has attempted to build momentum¬†for the president‚??s¬†$10.10 minimum wage campaign¬†in the days leading up to 10/10, portraying¬†the current $7.25 minimum wage as too little to support a family when working 40 hours a week, 52 weeks a year.

Min. wage workers are trying to squeeze by on only $15,080 a year: http://youtu.be/n6C0Yc4jy5o¬† it‚??s time for a raise

In 2013, less than 5 percent of American workers and less than 3 percent of those over the age of 25 were paid minimum wage. Studies have shown minimum wage hikes reduce employment among young, unskilled workers.

Another theme of AFL-CIO‚??s minimum wage messaging has been ‚??income inequality,‚?Ě with AFL-CIO asserting in¬†a recent ad,¬†‚??all the income gains of the last 15 years went to the richest 10 percent of Americans.‚?Ě According to the U.S. Census Bureau, this is a category that includes Richard Trumka, whose $272,250 gross salary alone¬†put him well into the top 5 percent.

Trumka isn‚??t the only union boss to demand a higher minimum wage while taking more than 20 times the current $7.25 rate¬†from American¬†workers.

AFSCME describes a federal minimum wage hike as ‚??a civil rights issue,‚?Ě and AFSCME President Lee Saunders¬†screamed for ‚??solidarity‚?Ě at a recent Ohio AFL-CIO convention. Saunders was paid $350,058, the equivalent of $168.30 per hour, during the union‚??s 2013 fiscal year.

AFT President Randi Weingarten recently¬†celebrated expanded ‚??living wage‚?Ě mandatesfrom far-left New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio,¬†suggesting DeBlasio‚??s action was¬†a model for the whole state.

Weingarten was paid $557,875, the equivalent of $268.21 per hour, during the teachers union‚??s 2014¬†fiscal year.

Earlier this year,¬†Trumka participated in a bus tour demanding a $10.10 minimum wage.¬†AFL-CIO and Communist Party USA¬†have hammered Heritage Foundation President Jim DeMint‚??s disinterest in debating Trumka on the issue, and AFL-CIO has attacked¬†minimum wage hike critics¬†with ‚??Koch Sisters‚?Ě ads.

Not to be outdone, Service Employees International Union, whose¬†1.8 million public- and private-sector members are not affiliated with AFL-CIO, has called¬†steeper government wage mandates ‚??essential for advancing civil & human rights today.‚?Ě

SEIU President Mary Kay Henry was paid $295,870 in 2013, or $142.25 per hour.

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