WASHINGTON, DC Congressman Ted Poe (TX) issued the following statement regarding the passage of H.R. 2, the Fair Minimum Wage Act:

I heard from constituents from all across my district and they overwhelmingly supported raising the federal minimum wage. I would have preferred the bill include measures to assist small businesses, like the ability to join into Small Business Association Health Plans, but the people in my district wanted an increase and I supported the measure. I voted for the increase in the 109th Congress and I voted for it again in the 110th Congress.

The Republican proposal that failed, but for which I voted (the WAGE Act of 2007), encouraged small businesses to offer health coverage to their workers. I hope the Senate will add Small Business Association Health Plans before the bill becomes law.