What exactly is Tom Emmer's position on the minimum wage? The short version is that the presumptive Republican nominee for governor of Minnesota has long opposed the minimum wage, calling it "a true from of socialism," and has recently gotten in hot water for proposing policies that critics argue would result in lower wages -- but his campaign says that scrapping the minimum wage or lowering wages is not on their agenda.
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Emmer has gone into damage control mode over comments that seemed to indicate that he thought waiters were being paid too much money, and credits should be instituted for their employers to apply tips towards their wages. Since then he has scheduled a listening session with servers, and even waited tables to show his solidarity with the waiters of Minnesota. What especially got Emmer in trouble was this claim: "With the tips that they get to take home, there are some that are earning over $100,000 a year -- more than the very people that are providing the jobs and investing not only their life savings but their family's future. Something has to be done about that."
Emmer campaign communications director Bill Walsh called TPMDC on Monday, and explained that Emmer did not commit to any solid plan for a tip credit -- and does not want to lower anyone's wages -- but simply indicated that he would support the idea when he was asked about it. "Obvious, Tom Emmer does not think most servers make that much money," said Walsh. "We're not saying that he didn't say people make 100,000 per year. The restaurant owner said it to Tom, and Tom repeated it in a press conference. Absolutely. All we're saying in the Emmer Truth thing is we get it. We know that most servers don't make $100,000 per year."
Walsh added: "It's an extreme example, that's what we do in politics. You go to the extreme examples to make your point."