Fact check: Quinn, Brady on the minimum wage
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[September 02, 2010]
CHICAGO -- The rhetoric in the race for
Illinois governor heated up Wednesday when Gov. Pat Quinn accused
his Republican rival, state Sen. Bill Brady, of wanting to slash
Illinois' minimum wage.
But Quinn overstates Brady's past comments, while Brady has created
confusion by trying to finesse his views.
Here's a look at what
the candidates have said and how those statements line up with the
CLAIM: "I don't think we need a governor who thinks the best way
to grow jobs is to slash the minimum wage on hardworking people,"
Quinn said of Brady.
THE FACTS: The Illinois minimum wage of $8.25 an hour is $1
higher than the federal rate. Brady has said Illinois is at a
competitive disadvantage when its minimum wage is higher than the
federal level, which is used by other states.
The question is what, if anything, Brady would do to change that
if he's elected governor.
His statements have been confusing.
In June, he said he supported "equaling, adopting the federal
minimum wage" -- a position that implied he would cut the state
rate. He and his staff quickly said that wasn't what he meant.
They said Brady meant that Illinois should freeze its minimum
wage until the federal level climbed to $8.25 and there was no
longer a mismatch.
Brady repeated that position this week.
"Let's be real, the minimum wage is not going to be reduced. The
General Assembly will not do that," Brady said Monday at a Chicago
"I'm not going to elevate it beyond (the current rate). We need
to rest it there and let the federal wage catch up with us so we
level the playing field," he said.
[to top of second column]
That hasn't kept Quinn from saying Brady still wants to cut
wages. He accused Brady of "trying to backtrack and confuse people."
Quinn says the bottom line is that he has backed increasing the
state minimum wage, while Brady voted against the idea as a
Since 2007, Illinois' minimum wage has increased from $6.50 under
a step-up program pushed by then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
By DEANNA BELLANDI]
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