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Congressional Democrats’ new minimum wage proposal: $12 per hour

Fortune

Congressional Democrats’ federal minimum wage proposal is getting a makeover.

On Thursday, members of the party will introduce a bill to raise the federal minimum wage to $12 per hour, a $4.75 increase over the current rate, which has gone untouched since 2009.

The so-called Raise the Wage Act, which will be introduced in the House of Representatives and Senate, will slowly boost the current $7.25 rate over the next five years, with the first hike to $8 coming in 2016 and $1 annual increases occurring through 2020. The bill’s sponsors—Senator Patty Murray, a Democrat from Washington, and Congressman Bobby Scott, a Democrat from Virginia—estimate that raising the federal minimum wage to $12 would result in increased pay for 38 million Americans.

The $12 headlining the legislation is an increase over Democrats’ 2013 proposal for a $10.10 minimum wage, which has languished in Congress. That amount appeared progressive at the…

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