Fast-food giant McDonald's will no longer participate in lobby efforts against minimum wage increases, boosting the likely passage of a House bill introduced by Democrats that would gradually raise the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour, Politico reports.
Genna Gent, McDonald's vice president of government relations, made the announcement in a letter to the National Restaurant Association on Tuesday.
"We believe increases should be phased in and that all industries should be treated the same way," Gent said. "The conversation about wages is an important one; it's one we wish to advance, not impede."
The House bill, The Raise the Wage Act, was considered a long shot when Democrats first introduced it in January. A companion measure in the Senate has 31 Democratic co-sponsors, led by Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.
The current federal rate is $7.25.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which argued a $15 per hour U.S. wage would burden small business owners and force cuts to workers' hours, said Tuesday it would be willing to negotiate over raising the hourly wage.
In its letter, McDonald's said it was "committed to playing a meaningful role in the spaces we occupy."
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