Saying the United States needs to be able to compete in a global economy, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said Thursday having a low minimum wage isn’t a bad thing for the country.
“Now, I want to create jobs so that you don’t have to worry about the minimum wage, you’re doing a great job, and you’re making much more than the minimum wage,” he said via phone on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “But I think having a low minimum wage is not a bad thing for this country.”
Mr. Trump had been asked how he would address flat wages in the country and if he thought the minimum wage should be raised across the board.
“It’s such a nasty question because the answer has to be nasty,” Mr. Trump said. “You know, we’re in a global economy now. It used to be people would leave New York state and companies would leave New York state or leave another state and go to Florida, go to Texas, go to wherever they go because the wages … you know, all sorts of different things.”
“Well now, it’s not leaving New York or New Jersey or wherever they may be leaving — now they’re leaving the United States, and they’re going to other countries because they’re competing for low taxes and they’re competing for low wages and they’re competing for all sorts of things,” he continued. “And you know, one of the things that’s happening is China, with what they’re doing with their currency with the devaluations. They’re making it very, very difficult for companies to compete.”
“So what’s happening now is people are shopping, companies are shopping. I see companies where they have international financiers — people that live in London, they’re not even citizens of the United States,” he said. “They’re shopping their companies to [other] places, and we can’t have a situation where our labor is so much more expensive than other countries that we can no longer compete.”
Mr. Trump said if he wins the White House, he would “make us so competitive as a country.”
“But we are no longer competing against one state against the other. … It’s the United States against other places,” he said. “Where the taxes are lower, where the wages are lower, where lots of things are” lower.