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Kentucky House OKs Minimum Wage Increase to $10.10; Bill Heads to Senate

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FRANKFORT — When a bill as contentious as this comes through a legislative body two things can be expected: a party-line vote and fiery speeches.After more than two-and-a-half hours of debate, the Kentucky House passed a bill Thursday afternoon that would raise the state’s minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $10.10.The issue drew impassioned speeches from supporting lawmakers.The debate’s most incendiary comments came from state Rep. Jim Wayne, a Louisville Democrat.The characteristically soft-spoken lawmaker criticized what he called an economic caste system that makes the rich richer and the poor poorer.“The free market system will guarantee everyone a quality job. Not so; a big lie," Wayne said. "The only way capitalism works is for government to step in and set the rules. Now you don’t wanna hear that, but it’s the truth. And that’s what the New Deal was all about.”After more than two-and-a-half hours of debate, the Kentucky House passed a bill Thursday afternoon that would raise the state’s minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $10.10.

Lawmakers voted 54 to 44 along partisan lines. The bill now heads to the Republican-controlled Senate.