Kevin O’Leary Slams California as ‘Worst Managed’ State Amid Minimum Wage Debate

California is known for its scenic beauty, vibrant urban hubs, and unique cultural fabric.

However, Kevin O’Leary of “Shark Tank” is not a fan of the Golden State. He recently called it the “worst managed” and “most uncompetitive” state in the nation.

O’Leary’s comments came during a recent Fox Business interview, when Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., challenged him about the drive for a $50 federal minimum wage.

“The problem with that narrative is it does not discuss the real root issue,” O’Leary told the audience.

Kevin O'Leary Slams California as 'Worst Managed' State Amid Minimum Wage Debate (1)

He notably condemned San Francisco, describing it as “an absolute warzone” and using it as an example of “how you can get to being a rat hole over ten years.”

He argued that rather than focusing on minimum wage issues, California officials should strengthen the state’s governance.

“So why not discuss better management of the resources versus just continuing to pay for inefficiency and lack of execution skills? That place is a loser state — the number one loser state on my list of winners and losers,” he said.

The Cost of Living Crisis

Lee suggested the minimum wage increase as part of her candidacy for a US Senate seat. Her idea is particularly ambitious, given that the current federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour.

California already has one of the highest minimum wages in the country, at $16 per hour.

Furthermore, higher minimum wage rates are set to go into effect later this year in specific industries: fast-food restaurant employers will see an increase to $20 per hour on April 1, 2024, and healthcare facility employers will see an increase to $25 per hour on June 1, 2024.

If you are interested in reading, then you should read previous articles on California:

Lee claims that her call for a $50 minimum wage originates from the state’s high cost of living.

“In the Bay Area, I believe it was the United Way, came out with a report that very recently $127,000 for a family of four is just barely enough to get by,” she remarked. “Another survey very recently: $104,000 for a family of one, barely enough to get by — low income because of the affordability crisis. And so just do the math.”

An individual who works 40 hours per week at $50 per hour earns $104,000 per year.

To put things into perspective, the Census Bureau reports that the median household income in America will be $74,580 in 2022.

Must-Have a look at the tweet that we have included below:

Of course, not everyone has the option to work 40 hours each week, even if they choose to.

According to Labor Department data released by USA Today, 4.2 million Americans worked part-time in December; either their employers reduced their hours, or they were unable to obtain full-time jobs.

When questioned how her $50 minimum wage plan would be economically sustainable for small businesses, Lee highlighted her entrepreneurial past, saying, “I owned and ran a small business for 11 years, and I created hundreds of jobs.”

She went on to explain, “I know what worker productivity means, and that means that you have to make sure that your employees are taken care of and have a living wage.”

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