Surreal Reality

Raise the minimum wage in Illinois?

Illinois must not impose any minimum wage increase. Businesses in Illinois are still struggling to recover from the deepest recession since the great depression. Illinois’ unemployment rate is stubbornly high at 9.2%, nearly 2 points higher than the U.S. average. Since 1.4% of Illinois workers earn minimum wage, increasing the mandatory minimum would have an adverse effect on the unemployment rate. I am opposed any measure that will increase unemployment or harm our businesses.

The economics of increasing in the minimum wage during a down economy are simple: when something costs more, people purchase less of it – including low-skilled labor. I believe the current minimum wage benefits those that it is intended to benefit and increasing it may be detrimental to their continued employment.

Our elected officials continually see legislation to increase the minimum wage. They must remain vigilant in their efforts to oppose those bills – and make it clear that such increases will drive more jobs out of Illinois and threaten our small businesses.

One of my own daughters is one of those minimum wage employees. This is not some arbitrary decision on my part, it is well thought out. It would be nice if she made more money, and she will, eventually, but not at the risk of further damaging our economy for the sake of garnering a few votes. Shame on Quinn, because that’s all this is, a tactic to scrounge up votes.


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