Despite months of intra-party fighting among different factions within the democratic membership, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a six-year phased increase in the federal minimum wage yesterday. The final vote of 233-199 in favor of more than doubling the current minimum of $7.25 to $15 an hour by 2025 came after a concerted effort by opponents to exempt employers with fewer than 10 employees or less than $1 million in annual gross income was defeated by a razor thin margin of 210-218.  Notwithstanding a recent CBO report projecting that the bill would cause the loss of 1.3 million jobs nationally, the legislation approved by the House also eliminates the sub-minimum wage for tipped employees, teenagers and employees with disabilities and ultimately tethers future increases in the federal minimum wage to inflation. The Raise the Wage Act now goes to the republican-controlled U.S. Senate, where it stands very little, if any, chance of passage. As if more than doubling the minimum wage weren’t enough damage for one day, there was also some speculation that the House would also take up the Protecting the Right to Organize Act (PRO Act), but as of this writing, we could not confirm whether any action had been taken. The PRO Act (H.R. 2474) would dramatically limit the use of the independent contractor classification for businesses and simplify the process by which unions could conduct organizing campaigns.