On Labor Day, Democrats Celebrate Worker Protections Despite GOP Efforts to Delay Progress
Today, Democrats celebrate working New Mexicans and commemorate labor activists, and recommit ourselves to the fight for critical worker protections. Democratic elected officials and labor leaders made great strides by increasing the minimum wage and securing paid leave for New Mexico’s working families. However, as we take today to reflect on our achievements, we must also be aware of those who continue to stand in the way of progress: the New Mexico GOP.
Throughout the pandemic, the Republican Party of New Mexico turned their back on the working people of New Mexico. As New Mexico’s workforce went above and beyond to provide for their community during COVID-19, GOP legislators continued to vote against paid sick leave and against other critical protections for workers. Republican leaders have proven time and time again that they will not prioritize New Mexico workers:
- GOP Party Chair Steve Pearce would gut protections for workers. Pearce is so out-of-touch with New Mexico’s working families that he wishes the minimum wage didn’t exist. After voting against a minimum wage increase when it was only $4.25 an hour, Chairman Pearce was recorded saying he’d rather businesses didn’t have to pay a minimum wage at all in order to give workers “discipline.”
- GOP candidate for governor and State Representative Rebecca Dow has tried to leave working New Mexicans out in the cold – repeatedly. Dow voted against raising the minimum wage and the tipped wage and also voted against guaranteed paid sick leave for all New Mexican employees.
- Republican US Representative Yvette Herrell voted against minimum wage increases in New Mexico as a state representative. While representing New Mexican workers in Congress, she’s also voted against the bipartisan Paycheck Fairness Act which would reduce the wage gap. Representative Herrell has no interest in helping New Mexicans earn fair and liveable wages.
- GOP candidate for governor and Sandoval County Commissioner Jay Block led the effort to impose the “right to work” effort in New Mexico, which was backed by out-of-state special interests and corporations, even voting for the anti-union policy in Sandoval County. Block’s blatantly anti-worker record suggests he will quickly curtail worker rights and protections should he become governor.
If the GOP was in charge, who knows if New Mexico workers would even have a minimum wage, paid leave, the right to organize or any of the workplace rights and protections that activists and Democrats have delivered on. The Republican Party of New Mexico continues to leave workers behind, even during a pandemic. This Labor Day, it’s more evident than ever that the GOP poses a threat to New Mexico’s workers and their families.