WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden today are using Labor Day appearances to press the case for a federal increase in the minimum wage -- a top issue for Democrats.
In Detroit, Biden told hundreds of union members that they deserve a "fair share" of any improvement in corporate profits. While criticizing corporate pay and companies that leave the U.S. for lower taxes, Biden said workers aren't looking for a handout. He said, "Just give them a chance."
Until now, Obama and his aides had been cautious about drawing too much attention to positive economic trends. They worried that some of those trends may prove to be fleeting -- or that not all Americans were benefiting from them.
White House aides insist they're still not declaring full victory over the lingering effects of a recession that ended five years ago. But officials believe it's time to highlight recent improvements, partly to help Democrats in a difficult political environment.
Obama has a Labor Day speech scheduled today in Wisconsin, promoting the economy in a state that was the epicenter of a fight over the collective bargaining rights of public employees.