Kelly Westlund delivers thousands of signatures to Rep. Duffy supporting minimum wage increase

From my email inbox:

Congressional candidate Kelly Westlund joined local activists for a press conference outside of Rep. Sean Duffy’s office in Superior today and delivered over 10,000 petition signatures from across Wisconsin calling on Rep. Duffy to support raising the minimum wage.

The petition to Rep. Duffy states:

With the growing gap between the rich and the rest of us, working-class Americans deserve a raise. I support raising the minimum wage to at least $10.10 per hour, and call on Rep. Sean Duffy to tell us where he stands- with working people who just want to put food on the table, or with corporate CEOs who just want bigger bonuses.”

Westlund said,”There is a growing movement in support of raising the minimum wage and it’s time for Sean Duffy to stand with his constituents. I have here over 10,000 signatures from Wisconsinites who believe that our representative in Congress ought to stand with working people instead of corporate CEOs, and support an increase in the minimum wage to at least $10.10 per hour.”

Westlund also said, “The vast majority of people working for minimum wage are over the age of 20, so obviously, these jobs are not just for high school students. They’re jobs for people who just want an opportunity to work hard and build a good life, even as the system is increasingly rigged against them.”

Steve Carlson of Trego also spoke on behalf of his step-daughter who has worked minimum wage jobs her entire life. Carlson stated that after seven years working at the same motel, she only recently started receiving a wage of $10.00 per hour.

“She’s been in the workforce for over 13 years, has worked hard and done well and still she is just over the federal poverty line,” Carlson stated. “Because she has been paid poverty wages all her life, she has been eligible for public assistance programs like food stamps, heating assistance and Badgercare. Without this assistance, she wouldn’t be able to make ends meet.”

Westlund talked about how raising the minimum wage to at least $10.10 per hour is essential for creating economic growth, saying “History and common sense tell us that the best way to restore economic growth is to expand economic opportunity to those who don’t already have it. Increasing the minimum wage will put money into the pockets of people who will spend it, creating real economic stimulus that just doesn’t happen when CEOs get bigger bonuses. That increased buying power is good for working people, and it’s good for the economy.”

Westlund was the first of many progressive candidates across the country to deliver petitions to a sitting legislator urging for an increase in the minimum wage. Over 60,000 signatures have been collected as part of a national effort with the Progressive Change Campaign Committee (PCCC) intended to pressure Congressional Republicans on this key economic issue ahead of the 2014 mid-term elections.

No doubt Rep. Duffy, who once famously said he struggles to make ends meet on his $174,000 salary, will do absolutely nothing to try to raise the federal minimum wage, lest he incur the wrath of his masters in industry and big business.

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