A Democrat-led effort in the Senate to raise the minimum wage to $7.25 an hour failed yesterday.
Senator Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts proposed an amendment that would have raised the federal minimum wage from $5.15 per hour to $7.25 per hour in three steps. The Senate voted 52-46 to approve the minimum-wage increase, but the proposal needed 60 votes for approval, the Los Angeles Times reports.
The federal minimum wage has remained at $5.15 since 1997, but 20 states and the District of Columbia have approved minimum wages above the federal level. The newspaper notes that in as many as 6 other states, voters will decide whether to raise the minimum wage on the November ballot.