If minimum-wage opponents weren't already shitting bricks, they're in for an awfully uncomfortable bowel movement: A new poll finds a stunning 68 percent of Seattle voters support a straight-up hike in the city's minimum wage to $15 an hour. No exemptions, no phase-ins, no strings attached.
The news for opponents only gets worse the further you delve into the details: 35 percent of voters "strongly support" the proposal, compared to only 14 percent who "strongly oppose," while support holds fast throughout the city and in every demographic subgroup except Republicans.
And in case opponents were hoping to console themselves with the thought that this is just some shoddy pro-labor propaganda (the poll was funded by a coalition that includes Working Washington, UFCW 21, Nick Hanauer, SEIU Healthcare 1199NW, the Teamsters, and the MLK County Labor Council), well, no luck there. The survey of 805 likely Seattle voters—an unusually large and robust sample—was conducted January 14 through January 22 by the reputable polling firm EMC Research, with a margin of error of ± 3.5 percentage points.
These numbers may be off the charts, but they're rock solid.
"We were certainly surprised," admits EMC Research principal Andrew Thibault about the unexpectedly positive results, "but it seems that there is a tipping point." Thibault believes that the $15 campaign in SeaTac, the fast-food strikes, and the embrace of the issue by winning candidates like Council Member Kshama Sawant and Mayor Ed Murray last year have all increased awareness and support for the issue.