Gov. Pat Quinn is in Day 4 of living on a minimum wage budget. The budget is $79 for the week, which he says is what a full-time worker has after housing, transportation and taxes. He’s eating light. “I had a banana again for breakfast. That’s three days in a row, and you have to watch your pennies, and I think it is important to understand that there are many families in Illinois – great families – who are working hard and are getting the minimum wage, which is $8.25 an hour. That is not enough. We’ve gotta raise that wage,” he said.
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Quinn proposed a $10 minimum wage this year, but lawmakers didn’t go along. This is a simulated experience – some would say a stunt – in that Quinn doesn’t have to worry about paying his electricity or phone bill or buying clothes or having money for an emergency.