Livia Gershon | Longreads | May 2018 | 10 minutes (2,366 words)

In the past several weeks, a flurry of U.S. Senators have come out in support of a federal jobs guarantee. Bernie Sanders announced that his office will propose a plan; Cory Booker filed legislation for a pilot program with Jeff Merkley, Kamala Harris, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Elizabeth Warren as cosponsors. “Creating an employment guarantee would give all Americans a shot at a day’s work, and by introducing competition into the labor market, raise wages and improve benefits for all workers,” Booker said.

The idea—that the government should provide a job for anyone who wants one—is both radical and impressively well-liked. A recent study found that 52 percent of Americans support it, compared with just 29 percent who say they’re opposed. David Shor, a senior data scientist at Civis Analytics, which conducted the research, told The Nation

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