A class-action lawsuit charges that the Democratic National Committee, the Pennsylvania Democratic Party and others involved in the party's 2016 national convention failed to pay overtime wages to an estimated 50 national field organizers.
The DNC adopted an official plank at the convention calling for a $15 an hour national minimum wage, more than double the current federal level of $7.25 an hour. "The Democratic Party believes that supporting workers through higher wages, workplace protections, policies to balance work and family, and other investments," it said.
That apparently didn't extend to the organizers, many of whom worked 80-hour weeks, according to Justin Swidler, a Cherry Hill, Pa., lawyer who filed the lawsuit. "They got paid a flat salary of $3,000 a month, which isn't even minimum wage for some of the hours that they were working," Swidler told CBS.
Spokesmen for the DNC and the Pennsylvania Democratic Party, the main defendants named in the complaint, did not respond to requests for comment by the Washington Examiner. Swidler's office said he was at trial and not available for comment.
Other activists who have worked on behalf of the higher minimum wage movement have made similar complaints. At a rally last year in Richmond, Va., the Service Employees International Union was protested by its own field organizers. They also said they had been denied the equivalent of a $15-an-hour wage, a claim the union did not dispute. The SEIU has been one of the main bankrollers of the $15 minimum wage movement, having spent $14 million in 2016 alone to promote the wage. Unions favor a higher minimum wage because they create pressure to raise all other wages.