Edwards Applauds Clinton's Call to Raise Minimum Wage

From CBS News' Aaron Lewis:

LE MARS, IOWA -- Senator Edwards commended Hillary Clinton today for introducing legislation that would raise the minimum wage to $9.50 and hour by the year 2011.

"I think that's wonderful," said Edwards, "I've been talking about raising the minimum wage to $9.50 for many months now and I'm happy to see that Senator Clinton has finally agreed to do it. That's good."

The comments came in a press avail following a community meeting in Le Mars.

Later in a written statement, Edwards took a bit of a swipe at Clinton, suggesting she's a little late to the game on her call for a minimum wage increase.

"I am glad Senator Clinton has joined me in supporting a further increase in the minimum wage," said Edwards. "Over five months ago, I challenged all of the candidates to help hard-working families and join my effort to raise the minimum wage to $9.50 an hour, and now, just 14 days before the Iowa caucuses, Senator Clinton has answered my call."

While Edwards has consistently called for the same hike in the minimum wage, Clinton's plan is slightly more ambitious. Senator Edwards has vowed to raise minimum wage by 2012 while Clinton's new legislation aims for 2011. Both plans call for minimum wage to be set to an index to rise as needed.

Meantime, Joining Edwards on the trail today was James Lowe. Lowe met Mr. Edwards back in July, and his story of being unable to speak for 50 years due to a cleft palate has been a call to arms by Edwards to fight big health care and and insurance companies.

"He's the number one man," said Mr. Lowe. "I'm with him all the way."