Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Proof Democrats Do Not Love The Poor

Washington DC is an interesting place.

While a number of affluent government workers actually live outside the city in ritzy suburbs like Maclean, Arlington, Bethesda or Silver Springs, there are a number of nice if expensive/touristy/trendy areas to live in DC itself.

Then there are the mostly black, poverty stricken urban neighborhoods where unemployment is high and at rates pretty much in line with black unemployment nationwide.

WalMart who already has three stores under construction in the area recently decided to build three more stores, one in the city's 5th Ward and two in the 7th Ward. These are two of the poorest areas in DC and the most in need of jobs, especially for young people.

You would think the Democrats who run the District of Columbia government would be jumping at the chance to add to the District's tax base and provide badly needed jobs for the people in these neighborhoods. And they'd also be interested in how WalMart's low prices would provide a welcome alternative for low income shoppers.

Boy, would you be mistaken!

The District Council has passed new legislation that specifically targets WalMart. It would require retailers operating in spaces 75,000 square feet or larger to pay their employees no less than $12.50 an hour. The city’s minimum wage is $8.25.

While the bill would apply to some other retailers — such as Home Depot, Costco and Macy’s — a grandfather period and an exception for those with unionized workforces made it clear that the bill targets WalMart, which has said it would open six stores, employing up to 1,800 people.

WalMart's response? If the bill is signed into law, not only will they 'reconsider' building the three new stores, but would likely not complete the ones under construction.

I certainly understand where WalMart is coming from. After all, if the loons on the DC Council can come up with one piece on confiscatory legislation aimed specifically at WalMArt, why not others once the stores are built?

DC's Democrat Mayor Vincent C. Gray called Wal-Mart’s move “immensely discouraging,” but indicted that he might consider vetoing the bill.

Tell me again how Democrats love the poor.


louielouie said...

i have mixed feelings about this.
living in the heart of wal-mart country. i have a super center a mile south, and a mile west of me, as well as a sam's three miles north. corporate headquarters are 120 miles east.
for years i have watched wally stores ream small towns.
there are documentaries on how they strong arm small towns into "letting" them build stores. think CAIR building a mosque.
there was one small town in virginia, that didn't re-elect it's mayor and city council because they favored the building of a wally store. before the new administration took office all the hearings/filings were completed and approved.
i am wondering why the city council only said $12.50, and not $25.00.
this has all the makings of a teachable moment.
the camel has stuck his nose in the tent, and is getting it cut off.
maybe wally store's representative in congress can get involved in this.

Rob said...

Believe me, I understand your point. Wal-Mart are no angels, especially in small town America when it comes to undercutting local stores. But IMO that isn't the issue here, really.

This is in DC, in places where an $8.25 an hour job means a great deal.And they're attempting to simply plunder WalMart with legislation aimed at a single company building something that would really mean a lot to the locals just because they feel they can.

Poor urban neighborhoods, particularly black ones are often under serviced when it comes to stores, markets and other services because of high crime, insurance costs, etc. So the poor are frequently forced to spend money that's scare to either travel outside their neighborhoods or buy from local stores that sell things at significantly higher prices.