Most workers that are paid an hourly wage support a proposed increase in the federal minimum wage, even if it results in higher consumer prices and job cuts, a recent survey found.

Of 500 employees polled nationwide, 65 percent said they favor the wage hike regardless of its potential impact on consumer prices, while 50 percent were in favor if it meant co-workers might lose their jobs, according to Dominion Enterprises, a Norfolk, Va.-based media and marketing firm.

"Hourly employees understand that raising the federal minimum wage could lead to paying more at the cash register and a majority is prepared to do exactly that," Sharon Sewell, a senior director at the National Association of Workforce Boards, said in a statement. "Taken as a whole, the data suggests that there is popular support for raising the minimum wage, as 31 states already have."

A bill recently approved by Congress would raise the federal minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25 an hour over two years. The bill, which also includes $4.8 billion in tax cuts for smaller employers, was attached to an Iraq war spending bill vetoed by President Bush earlier this month. It has since been attached to a second spending bill approved by the House and expected to be debated in the Senate this week

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Published on: May 14, 2007