$15 minimum wage for Seattle wins backing of 68% of likely voters, new poll shows

Overwhelming support for $15 across every city council district

A new poll conducted by EMC Research finds a remarkable 68% citywide level of support for a $15 minimum wage among likely Seattle voters. Support is incredibly robust across every City Council district — and in several areas, fully 3 in 4 likely voters support for $15 for Seattle. (Specific highlights available online; EMC Research has also made their full polling memo publicly available.)

These remarkable results come little more than a week before "Boycott McPoverty," the February 20th one-day citywide boycott of the big burger chains (McDonald's, Burger King, Wendy's) called by Seattle fast food workers. Boycott McPoverty will mark another step forward as momentum continues to build to lift workers out of poverty and boost the economy with $15 for Seattle.

Who: Seattle fast-food workers and other supporters of $15 for Seattle What: Call on the city to "Boycott McPoverty" in a one-day citywide boycott of the big burger chains (McDonald's, Burger King, Wendy's) that will build on the overwhelming support for $15 across the city. When: Thursday, February 20, 2014, breakfast, lunch and dinner. Where: Boycott lines outside multiple stores will be scheduled throughout the day at multiple locations across the city. Details available next week.

In less than 9 months, the Seattle fast food strikes have given birth to a wildly popular movement to boost the economy by ensuring workers are paid enough to support themselves. Back on May 30th, the day of the first strikes, the call for $15 was treated as a quixotic aspiration destined for failure. But after months of action by low-wage workers, voters in SeaTac and Seattle moved the issue dramatically forward on Election Day. Now, as Mayor Murray's task force discusses the best way to implement a $15 minimum wage, an overwhelming consensus has coalesced in support of the call for $15 initially raised in the fast food strikes.

Highlights of the EMC Research Poll:

  • 68% of likely Seattle voters support a $15 minimum wage vs. just 25% who oppose
  • Support is strong in every council district:
    • District 1 (West Seattle): 58% - 37%
    • District 2 (South Seattle): 74% - 17%
    • District 3 (Capitol Hill): 71% - 20%
    • District 4 (U District/Wallingford/Ravenna): 76% - 14%
    • District 5 (Northgate/North Seattle): 75% - 23%
    • District 6 (Ballard/Greenwood): 68% - 25%
    • District 7 (Queen Anne/Downtown): 60% - 32%
  • Strong enforcement rules (including fines) win 86% support
  • Three in four voters agree that "If workers in Seattle earn higher wages, our entire community benefits."
  • 71% agree that "A higher minimum wage helps local businesses because more workers making more money means they will have more money to spend."

About the poll:

  • The poll was conducted by EMC Research, a leading public opinion & market research firm, through a January 14 - 22 telephone survey of 805 likely November 2014 voters in Seattle, with a margin of error of 3.5%.
  • Polling was funded by a coalition of organizations & individuals supporting $15 for Seattle, including Working Washington, UFCW 21, Nick Hanauer, SEIU 1199NW, the Teamsters, and the MLK County Labor Council.


Contact: Sage Wilson, Working Washington, sage@workingwa.org