August 11, 2014
Local labor unions say Bobby Schilling is out of touch with working Americans. This morning, the Quad City Federation of Labor held a protest in Rock Island against the former 17th district congressman. The Colona Republican candidate is hosting a lunch fundraiser featuring the Speaker of the U.S. House.
Federation president, Dino Leone, says Schilling opposes raising the minimum wage and doesn't support the people he wants to represent.
"It saddens me that people talk about making it paycheck by paycheck and they're making six figures, but then they hold 2k fundraisers. Those people live in a different world. They don't live in the people's worlds that I represent."
Leone says Speaker John Boehner's support of Schilling sends a message that corporate profits are more important the livelihoods of working Americans. The federal minimum wage, $7.25 an hour, which Leone says just won't cut it.
"In Illinois, we have a referendum on the ballot to increase that, because we know that even Illinois' minimum wage is a poverty wage, but the message needs to go back to Washington. He's the Speaker of the House, and being the Speaker of the House, you should lead by example; and leading by example saying, 'No, anybody who works full time in this country should not be working in poverty."
About a dozen retirees, union workers, and students gathered at the Illinois Department of Employment Services in Rock Island for today's protest.
(Photo: Local protesters at the Illinois Department of Employment Services in Rock Island.)