Durbin: People Who Work Hard Everyday Should Not Have To Live In Poverty

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – Opposition to raising the federal minimum wage for millions of Americans is unacceptable and wrong, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today during a press conference with Senate Democratic Leadership following a 54 to 42 procedural vote on the Minimum Wage Fairness Act. A 60 vote threshold was needed in order to open debate. The bill would increase the national minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 over the next two years. It would also raise the tipped minimum wage, which has not changed in over twenty years, phasing in an increase from $2.13 to $7.00, nearly 70% of the full minimum wage.

“When fighting for passage of the first national minimum wage, Roosevelt, in one of his famous fire side chats, stated, ‘Do not let any calamity-howling executive with an income of $1,000 a dad tell you that a wage of $11 a week is going to have a disastrous effect on all American Industry.’ And this was in the midst of the Great Depression,” Durbin said. “Yet Roosevelt carried the day, the minimum wage was established, and the sky did not fall. The opposition’s exaggerated claims were not true then and are not true now. At the very least, this issue deserves a full debate.”           


Video of Durbin’s remarks is available here.

Audio of Durbin’s remarks is available here.