Reclaim Chicago Endorses Aldermanic Candidate John Arena

Reclaim Chicago Endorses Aldermanic Candidate John Arena

Reclaim Chicago Demands Passage of Clean Illinois Minimum Wage Bill, Denounces Attempts to Subvert Chicago’s Home Rule on Minimum Wage Issue

Reclaim Chicago calls for passage of a clean bill to raise Illinois’ minimum wage to $10.10 per hour in this veto session and condemns any efforts to restrict other municipalities from raising higher minimum wages of their own.

Reports indicate that Speaker of the House Michael Madigan and Senate President John Cullerton have surveyed members about support for a bill that would raise Illinois’ minimum wage to $10.10 per hour while prohibiting municipalities from setting higher minimum wages.

“This has Rahm Emanuel’s finger prints all over it,” says David Hatch, Reclaim Chicago’s Executive Director. “Raising the minimum wage, even to $13, is something his corporate donors strongly oppose. Madigan and Cullerton would be doing Emanuel a big favor by tying his hands on this issue. They’ll also be making an increase in Illinois’ minimum wage a bit more palatable to their own corporate donors.”

“Reclaim Chicago supports a $15 per hour minimum wage. It is a central part of our platform,” said Toby Chow, Chair of The People’s Lobby, “By rescuing Emanuel from his pledge to raise Chicago’s minimum wage to $13, Madigan and Cullerton are complicit in taking $6,000 of desperately needed income out of the hands of each full-time minimum wage worker in the city. It’s immoral, and further evidence that we need to reclaim the Democratic Party from corporate interests, starting in Chicago.”

Democrats control 71 of 118 seats in the Illinois House and 40 of 59 seats in the Illinois Senate, giving the party the 3/5 supermajority needed to pass a clean bill.

Reclaim Chicago also opposes tax cuts for corporations in exchange for Republican support for increasing the Illinois minimum wage. Governor-elect Bruce Rauner has indicated that his support for increasing Illinois’ minimum wage is contingent upon a reduction of the corporate tax rate in Illinois.

“With fully 2/3 of corporations paying NO Illinois income tax and our communities facing reductions in social services due to a budget crisis caused by inadequate revenue, there are no circumstances under which Illinois can afford to give corporations further tax breaks,” said Jan Rodolfo, Midwest Director of National Nurses United.

Reclaim Chicago endorsed 13 candidates for alderman at its launch event on Saturday, November 15, 2014. All candidates pledged support for a $15 per hour Chicago minimum wage.

6th Ward, Roderick T. Sawyer

7th Ward, LaShonda “Shonnie” Curry

8th Ward, Tara Baldridge

9th Ward, Michael LaFargue

11th Ward, Maureen Sullivan

25th Ward, Byron Sigcho

26th Ward, Juanita Irizarry

32nd Ward, Scott Waguespack

33rd Ward, Tim Meegan

35th Ward, Carlos Ramirez-Rosa

38th Ward, Nicholas Sposato

40th Ward, Dianne Daleiden

45th Ward, John Arena

Reclaim Chicago is a joint project of The People’s Lobby and National Nurses United. The People’s Lobby works on issues ranging from austerity and budgets to mass incarceration, good jobs, climate change and campaign finance, and its members provided more than 2,000 volunteer hours knocking doors and phone banking for progressive electoral campaigns in 2014.  National Nurses United, with 6,000 Registered Nurses in Illinois and close to 185,000 members across the country, is the largest union and professional association of RNs in U.S. history.