Karen Handel: “I do not support a livable wage” (GA-6th CD special election)

Well, there’s one she wishes she could get back, but there are no do-overs in politics. Karen Handel, the Republican candidate in the Georgia 6th special House election, blurted out a pretty bad sound bite in a recent debate with her Democratic opponent Jon Ossoff.

In answer to a question about whether government should gaurantee a wage sufficient for a worker to actually live on, Ossoff essentially said yes and Handel no. This is really a question about the reach of government and the power it should have to compel private businesses to pay their employees a wage high enough to feed, clothe, and house themselves and their families. Democrats typically say more power to compel, Republicans say less (because, they would say, the market should determine wages).

Unfortunately, Handel’s comments made it sound like she doesn’t think people should be paid enough to live on when she said “I do not support a livable wage.”

The election is on June 20th and you can be sure Democrats are putting the final touches on a new ad or five that makes use of the clip. While Handel genuinely misspoke, her comments do echo concerns that when it comes down to it Republicans aren’t all that worried about workers as long as corporate profits remain high.

Sometimes candidates accidentally say what they really mean.

As for its impact on the campaign, probably not much. But as Ossoff is supposed to be the newbie and Handel the veteran, it doesn’t say much for her that she could make such a stupid mistake. Voters might notice.

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