Governor Walker doesn't support increasing or repealing minimum wage; Mary Burke wants it raised

MADISON (AP) — Governor Scott Walker says that while he doesn't support increasing the minimum wage, he also doesn't support repealing it altogether.

Walker was asked about his position on the minimum wage on Tuesday, October 14th.

Walker's comments about the minimum wage during Friday's debate with Democratic challenger Mary Burke raised questions about whether he supported doing away with it.

But Walker says he wants to keep the minimum wage. He says his goal is to raise wages for everyone.

Burke supports raising the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 per hour.

Milwaukee County Supervisor Khalif Rainey on Wednesday, October 15th criticized the Walker administration for a recent ruling in which a labor group’s complaint was denied that would have forced an increase in the state’s current minimum wage of $7.25.

“Recent polling by UW-Milwaukee showed that 76 percent of registered Wisconsin voters support an increase in the minimum wage. Clearly this is something the people of Wisconsin support, yet the Walker administration rejected an opportunity to raise the minimum wage," Rainey said.

Rainey said approval of a referendum question on the November ballot on whether to raise the minimum wage would help put pressure on all elected officials to support an increase.

“Few people doubt that we should raise the minimum wage. This shameful ruling by the Walker administration is evidence that we need to find a way to convince our elected officials to increase the minimum wage. We know raising the minimum wage the fair thing to do, and people need to tell that to our elected officials. A referendum is a useful tool to send a message to elected officials, and I urge everyone to turn out for the November elections," Rainey said.

Stephanie Bloomingdale, the secretary-treasurer of the Wisconsin AFL-CIO issued this statement:

"Scott Walker doesn't care about people who work for a living.  He wants corporations to have all the power.  For nearly a century, American workers have relied on minimum wage protections.  Now is not the time to take away these important laws. Now is the time to raise the minimum wage so that people who get up and go to work every day can have a decent standard of living. Come on Scott Walker this is America, why do you want to roll back the clock on workers’ rights?"

Raise Wisconsin, a project of Wisconsin Jobs Now and Wisconsin Working Families has launched a three-week "get-out-the-vote" effort led by underpaid workers who want an increase in the minimum wage. Raise Wisconsin is collecting pledges to vote for Mary Burke and support minimum wage referenda.