Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI)
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's administration recently claimed that the minimum wage of $7.25 an hour is a living wage. Now Walker is saying that he doesn't think the minimum wage even "serves a purpose":
Well, I'm not going to repeal it, but I don't think it serves a purpose because we're debating then about what the lowest levels are at. I want people to make, like I said the other night, two or three times that.
The jobs I focus on, the programs we put in place, the training we put in place, is not for people to get minimum wage jobs. It's the training—whether it's in apprenticeships, whether it's our tech colleges, whether's it our [University of Wisconsin] system—it's to try and provide the training, the skills, the talents, the expertise that people need to create careers that pay many, many times over.
It's all well and good to claim that you want people to make two or three times the minimum wage ... but then why not make it the law in your state for people to make, say, around 40 percent more than the current minimum wage? Walker's position boils down to "When I'm talking about ideals, I say I want people to make $14.50 or $21.75 an hour, but when I'm asked to make it so people make $10.10 an hour, I decide that $7.25 is a living wage."
Talking about what you want for people when you're not actually doing jack to make it happen may be a good strategy as a politician. It obscures the degree to which Walker is dodging the question. He doesn't think the minimum wage—a poverty-level wage that many employers still evade any way they can—serves a purpose, because [this is where he changes the subject and hopes you won't notice]. The rest of his answer is completely irrelevant to the topic of the minimum wage or to anything existing in reality, because when Scott Walker talks about the jobs he's focusing on, it's important to remember that Wisconsin job creation has fallen far short of Walker's promises during the 2010 election.
Please, please give $3 to boot Scott Walker out of office by electing Mary Burke.
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Scott Walker saying he doesn't think the minimum wage serves a purpose because he thinks people should be earning two or three times the minimum wage (which he will not raise to ensure that they're making even a little more) is like me saying I don't think I should go to the gym because I should automatically be super-fit even if I just lie here on the couch.