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Poll shows support for minimum wage hike

ALBANY -– Even with lawmakers away on vacation for two weeks, minimum wage wars are starting to heat up as the various sides try to settle on their legislative priorities for the final couple months of the session.

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver pointed to a new poll out today showing overwhelming support for a minimum wage hike as ammunition for his Democratic conference’s plan to raise the level from $7.25 per hour now to $8.50 per hour later this year.

"We should be listening to the people," Silver said after Quinnipiac University released a poll showing New Yorkers back a wage hike by a four-to-one margin. Broken down by proposed wage levels, 29 percent of registered voters responding to the poll said they support New York going to the $8.50 level, while 41 percent said it should increase even higher than Silver has proposed. Twenty percent oppose any mandatory minimum wage hike.

In Syracuse this afternoon, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo continued his stance of not committing either way. Senate Republicans say Silver’s plan would cause businesses to lay off workers.

"I’ve supported minimum wage increases in the past," Cuomo said.

--Tom Precious

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About Politics Now

Robert J. McCarthy

Robert J. McCarthy

A native of Schenectady, Robert J. McCarthy came to The Buffalo News in 1982 following a six-year stint at the Olean Times Herald. He is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University, and has been covering local, state and national politics since 1992.

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Tom Precious

Tom Precious

Tom Precious joined The Buffalo News in 1997 as bureau chief at the state Capitol, where he covers everything from statewide politics and state government fiscal affairs to health care, environmental and municipal government matters. Prior to The News, he worked for news outlets in Albany and Washington, DC.

[email protected]


Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri is an Amherst native and has covered politics and government in upstate New York since 2003. She joined The Buffalo News in 2012 and covers City Hall.

@jillterreri | [email protected]


Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski, The Buffalo News Washington bureau chief, has reported from the nation's capital since 1989 after joining The News as a business reporter in 1984. A graduate of Syracuse University, Zremski is a former Nieman fellow in journalism at Harvard University. In 2007, he served as president of the National Press Club.

@JerryZremski | [email protected]

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