Published: Feb. 27, 2014 By

If you talk about inequality in America, and if you want to read about it, The New York Times columnist Paul Krugman and his columns are a safe bet for you. The economics Nobel laureate regularly writes about issues such as unemployment, minimum wage and social mobility – as in one of his most recent columns, “Down the Up Staircase.”  He also published a variety of books, including his most recent one, “End this Depression Now!” A few days ago, Krugman provided his followers with two presentations he gave at Princeton University – one on the Stimulus, and the other on how to help workers.

Just recently, it seems, the Republican Party started to revise its strategy on how to help workers. In the Washington Monthly’s blog “Political Animal,” Ed Kilgore posted an opinion piece, depicting an essential part of the Republican strategy for economic recovery. He wrote about how it took the GOP years to realize that solely focusing their efforts on “job-creators” wasn’t going to pay off – neither in electoral success, nor in economic recovery. He quoted Republican House majority leader Rep. Eric Cantor, saying that “90 percent of Americans work for someone else.” In an early-February briefing, Cantor was reported to have “rallied his troops on how to talk to people who don’t own their own businesses, and [those who] don’t view themselves as second-class citizens for working for somebody else.”

How tough a job Republican leadership is facing to unite its party behind a consistent approach to nourishing the economy shows the latest statement of Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal after a meeting of state governors at the White House. In its “First Read” paraphrased Jindal’s words as follows: “ ‘The Obama economy is now the minimum wage economy,’ Jindal said, accusing the president of ‘waving the white flag of surrender’ on job growth.” The column immediately follows up with a reaction of Democratic Connecticut Gov. Dan Malloy, who, according to NBC News, said something as little judgmental as: “That’s the most insane statement I’ve ever heard.”

The minimum wage debate continues to rage, and will likely set the tone for the upcoming midterm campaign season. As both parties try to shape their profiles, a speedy solution is utterly unexpected. As the Washington Post’s Greg Sargent wrote in his “The Plum Line” blog, House Democrats are expected to try to force the Republican majority into a corner, filing a discharge petition to get a House vote on the minimum wage hike. Sargent attributes the information to a “Democratic leadership aide.” House Republicans are most likely not going to sign the petition, but could still become pressured, Sargent writes in his story headlined “Dems ramp up pressure on minimum wage.”

Meanwhile Senate Democrats have pushed off a vote on raising the minimum wage to late March or early April, CBS News reports, citing scheduling conflicts and obstruction from Senate Republicans as reasons. Originally, Senate majority leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., had wanted to hold a vote in early March.

On the Forbes Magazine website, staff writer John Tamny offers some less heard-of analysis on job safety, an issue that is at the center of the minimum wage debate. First, he declares it “sure” that the mandatory pay-raise would render some unemployed as “labor is a cost like any other.” But just a couple of lines further into his piece, Tamny opens up: “Where the right get it comically wrong is in their commentary about how minimum wages will force automation on companies as though this is a bad thing. No, it’s something we should embrace. Counterintuitive as it may seem, economic growth is all about the destruction of work – doing more with less labor inputs – on the way to higher profits.”