* Bruce Rauner’s statement that he most definitely wanted to lower the minimum wage by a dollar an hour is becoming quite a big story, despite his attempt to walk back the demand yesterday.
As noted below, all four Republican gubernatorial candidates have now weighed in on the minimum wage issue. And now it’s moved into the state treasurer’s race. From a press release…
Republican Gubernatorial candidate and billionaire Bruce Rauner announced yesterday that he supports lowering Illinois’ minimum wage rate from $8.25 to $7.25. Representative Tom Cross has a long history of rejecting minimum wage increases, most recently voting against increases in 2003 and 2006. If Tom Cross had his way, the minimum wage would still be $4.25 cents an hour as it was when he was first elected. The Cross\Rauner plan to stop an increase or even lower the minimum wage is mean-spirited and would drain millions from our economy and throw thousands more into poverty.
State Senator Mike Frerichs, Democratic candidate for State Treasurer, released the following statement responding to Rauner’s ridiculous idea;
“I’m shocked by billionaire Bruce Rauner’s attack on working families who are just trying to earn a living. Bruce Rauner says that he wants Illinois to be competitive with surrounding states. If he really means that, then he should join our President in his effort to raise the minimum wage for everyone in this country.
Perhaps Rauner took his cues from Tom Cross who in the last ten years voted against raising the minimum wage twice (2003 and 2006) and as recently as last year agreed that raising the minimum wage was a “job killer”. It’s not surprising that Rauner has partnered with Tom Cross by giving the maximum of $10,600 to Cross’ campaign.
Bruce Rauner and Tom Cross represent what the Illinois Republican Party is comprised of; clueless candidates who denigrate low-income workers and stack the deck against working families just trying to get ahead. I repudiate Rauner’s race to the bottom in wages and urge people to sign my petition at www.FrerichsforIllinois.com/supportminwage and tell Rauner and Cross to stand with working families and support President Obama’s call to raise the minimum wage.”
One minor correction. Rauner actually made his original statement on December 11th, according to John Gregory at the Illinois Radio Network, not yesterday. It was reported yesterday, but the quote had been sitting around a while.