Republicans have muscled the first minimum wage increase in a decade through the House, coupling it with a cut in inheritance taxes on a multimillion-dollar estates.
GOP leaders saw combining the wage and tax issues as their best chance for getting permanent cuts to the estate tax. The move left Democrats fuming and is sure to cause problems when the hybrid measure is taken up in the Senate next week.
Democrats opposed to the costly estate tax cuts are likely to kill it.
The bill passed the House 230 to 180.
The GOP package would increase the wage from $5.15 an hour to $7.25 an hour, phased in over the next three years.