According to reports this week, leaders in the New Jersey legislature hope to make New Jersey the next state to adopt a $15 an hour minimum wage.  Several lawmakers, including Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto, are pushing legislation to raise the state’s current $8.38 hourly minimum to $15, an astounding 79% increase!  Prieto is quoted as calling the increase “an integral component in our effort to stop the decline in the middle class and lift working families out of poverty.”  My bet would be that the proponents thought they could politically position Governor Chris Christie, who had criticized the proposal, into accepting it during his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination.  Governor Christie dropped out of the race after a disappointing finish in the New Hampshire primary, so we expect he will not acquiesce.