Review Category : Poltics

EPA Office of Water Is Caught Playing Kim Kardashian Mobile Game

Glu Games, Inc.(WASHINGTON) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Water works to ensure that drinking water is safe and focuses on the safety of aquatic ecosystems.

But the office sent a tweet Monday night that didn’t have much to do with water.

“I’m now a C-List celebrity in Kim Kardashian: Hollywood,” the tweet said in reference to her new gaming app. “Come join me and become famous too by playing on iPhone!”

The tweet remained visible for hours, plugging the popular mobile game that allows you to join a cartoon version of Kardashian on a red carpet adventure, performing tasks to increase your celebrity profile.

Thousands of people responded to the tweet, sharing it and commenting as confusion grew. Eventually, it was deleted.

The game’s developers, Glu Games, poked fun at the situation, writing “Keep at it @EPAwater, you’ll get there.”

Keep at it @EPAwater, you’ll get there. #AList #WillowPapeIsTheWorst #KimKardashianGame

— Glu Games (@glumobile) July 22, 2014

U.S. Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich., wondered what happened:

I’m the last original author of the Clean Water Act, but I have no idea who/what a Kardashian is and I rarely play games. You OK, @EPAwater?

— John Dingell (@john_dingell) July 22, 2014

Rep. Steve Stockman, R-Texas, from Texas was more blunt:

I hope the Kardashians don’t mind being associated with something that spends millions without contributing to society. @EPAwater

— Rep. Steve Stockman (@SteveWorks4You) July 22, 2014

Others found humor in the office’s mistake, as well as its C-List status.

Congrats @EPAwater on your Kardashian game success. If you can solve Kim K’s complex problems, you can do great things with our environment.

— Alex Kantrowitz (@Kantrowitz) July 22, 2014

Glad to know @EPAwater employees (paid by taxpayers) are hard at work playing Kim Kardashian games on their iPhones. pic.twitter.com/FfOcnE7NiW

— Eli Rubenstein (@EliRubenstein) July 22, 2014

.@EPAwater Would you classify that Kardashian game a Superfun site?

— delrayser (@delrayser) July 22, 2014

@EPAwater, how wonderful! Nothing wrong with C list. pic.twitter.com/8VJcDmwed5

— Adam Verran (@AdamVerran) July 22, 2014

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President Obama Backs Statehood for DC

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) — While there’s a new move afoot in California to split it into six states, there has been talk for years about making Washington, D.C. the 51st state.

On Monday, President Obama revealed that he supports the idea of statehood for the District of Columbia.

The president explained his rationale like this: “Folks in D.C. pay taxes like everybody else. They contribute to the overall well-being of the country like everybody else. They should be represented like everybody else.”

According to Obama, he’s no Johnny Come Lately to making Washington a state, claiming that he’s long been behind the idea.

However, the president acknowledged that getting Congress to approve statehood for D.C., just like other initiatives he’s promoted during his five-plus years in office, would no doubt be difficult.

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President Obama Backs Statehood for DC

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) — While there’s a new move afoot in California to split it into six states, there has been talk for years about making Washington, D.C. the 51st state.

On Monday, President Obama revealed that he supports the idea of statehood for the District of Columbia.

The president explained his rationale like this: “Folks in D.C. pay taxes like everybody else. They contribute to the overall well-being of the country like everybody else. They should be represented like everybody else.”

According to Obama, he’s no Johnny Come Lately to making Washington a state, claiming that he’s long been behind the idea.

However, the president acknowledged that getting Congress to approve statehood for D.C., just like other initiatives he’s promoted during his five-plus years in office, would no doubt be difficult.

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Gun Control Takes Center Stage on Chris Christie Conn. Trip

Governor’s Office/Tim Larsen(GREENWICH, Conn.) — When New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie traveled to Connecticut to campaign with Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Foley, the issue of gun control dominated the evening.

Outside one of the fundraisers Christie attended, he was greeted by about 170 protesters angry at his decision in July to veto legislation that would have banned magazines with more than ten rounds of ammunition. In this state still reeling from the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting, protesters from Newtown, Connecticut held signs that said “Not One More” and “Be a Gun Sense Voter.”

At a diner he stopped at with Foley earlier he was asked by a voter from Newtown how he would limit gun violence in the nation without limiting access to high-capacity magazines, and Christie answered that he believes there is, “no evidence that high capacity magazines does anything to limit violence.”

“If you really want to limit mass violence in the country, you need to get at the mental health system in this country, which doesn’t deal with these folks,” Christie told the man named Richard Boritz. “Every one of these instances of mass killings, we had people with significant mental health issues. And that needs to be dealt with. It’s not the sexy part of it. It’s not the stuff that gets you big headlines when you are a politician. It’s the stuff that actually gets the job done. So I think we should stop doing the headline-grabbing stuff and start doing the actual work that makes a difference.”

Boritz attempted to continue the conversation, but Christie said he is “not engaged in a debate.” “You asked a question,” Christie told him. “That’s my answer. I am not going to debate you. If you run against me someday I will debate you all you like.”

Newtown families attempted to meet with Christie the day he vetoed the legislation and they have accused him of refusing to meet with them. On Monday, Christie told reporters that he met with the families a year ago, but he, “didn’t feel like it was necessary to meet with them again, especially after I had made the decision.”

“The fact is we have an honest disagreement,” Christie told reporters at the diner. “Now people on issues across this country can disagree, we disagree. I made the decision that I felt was best, they disagreed, that is certainly their prerogative to do so and to express themselves.”

He added that he has “nothing but sympathy” for the families, but he doesn’t believe the bill in New Jersey, which passed the Democratic controlled state legislature, was an, “effective way to deal with it so I vetoed it; it’s a difference of opinion, but it’s nothing personal.”

Foley chose not to reveal if he agreed with Christie’s veto.

Christie was also asked if he thought he could be a viable 2016 presidential candidate if he did not veto the bill and he answered, “I don’t make decisions on what bills to sign or veto based upon someone’s perception of viability.”

The protesters gathered at the bottom of a private road leading to the home of the fundraiser for the Republican Governors Association, where Christie serves as chairman. Katherine Morosky of Newtown, accompanied by her 7-year-old daughter Marie, held a politically-charged sign that read, “Stop Playing Politics, Children’s Lives are Not Trivial, Fewer Bullets Save Lives.”

It was a reference to what Christie said in his veto message, writing he could, “not support such a trivial approach to the sanctity of human life.”

Marie was not a student at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, but her mother claimed she was friends with five of the children killed, as well as some of the surviving children who were able to escape when Adam Lanza reloaded. Morosky said she was “extremely offended” by Christie’s veto, adding mental health is an issue, but there is still “easy access” for those with mental illness to ammunition making it possible to “kill 25 people in five minutes.”

“It’s such easy access to those weapons used for war and you can take out a lot more people out that way,” Morosky said of the higher-capacity magazines. “It makes a very big difference.”

Sandy Hook resident Cindy Carlson held a sign that read, “My Kids are Not Trivial,” and said those moments when a murderer reloads is crucial. “The difference is when a person with bad intentions must stop and reload it gives potential victims time to escape,” she said.

Christie and Foley appeared at the Glory Days Diner, appropriate for the devoted Bruce Springsteen fan. He was greeted there by a supportive crowd, with one woman shouting at the possible 2016 presidential candidate, “Hey good looking!” Another woman told him she once received a kiss from President George W. Bush so she needed one from him. He obliged saying to the cameras surrounding him, “You gotta do what you gotta do” with a smile.

Foley ran previously in 2010 losing to current Gov. Dannel Malloy by just over 6,000 votes. One of the fundraisers Monday night was for the RGA and the other was to raise money for the Connecticut GOP, that one was held at the home of former hedge fund manager Brian Olson.

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Gun Control Takes Center Stage on Chris Christie Conn. Trip

Governor’s Office/Tim Larsen(GREENWICH, Conn.) — When New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie traveled to Connecticut to campaign with Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Foley, the issue of gun control dominated the evening.

Outside one of the fundraisers Christie attended, he was greeted by about 170 protesters angry at his decision in July to veto legislation that would have banned magazines with more than ten rounds of ammunition. In this state still reeling from the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting, protesters from Newtown, Connecticut held signs that said “Not One More” and “Be a Gun Sense Voter.”

At a diner he stopped at with Foley earlier he was asked by a voter from Newtown how he would limit gun violence in the nation without limiting access to high-capacity magazines, and Christie answered that he believes there is, “no evidence that high capacity magazines does anything to limit violence.”

“If you really want to limit mass violence in the country, you need to get at the mental health system in this country, which doesn’t deal with these folks,” Christie told the man named Richard Boritz. “Every one of these instances of mass killings, we had people with significant mental health issues. And that needs to be dealt with. It’s not the sexy part of it. It’s not the stuff that gets you big headlines when you are a politician. It’s the stuff that actually gets the job done. So I think we should stop doing the headline-grabbing stuff and start doing the actual work that makes a difference.”

Boritz attempted to continue the conversation, but Christie said he is “not engaged in a debate.” “You asked a question,” Christie told him. “That’s my answer. I am not going to debate you. If you run against me someday I will debate you all you like.”

Newtown families attempted to meet with Christie the day he vetoed the legislation and they have accused him of refusing to meet with them. On Monday, Christie told reporters that he met with the families a year ago, but he, “didn’t feel like it was necessary to meet with them again, especially after I had made the decision.”

“The fact is we have an honest disagreement,” Christie told reporters at the diner. “Now people on issues across this country can disagree, we disagree. I made the decision that I felt was best, they disagreed, that is certainly their prerogative to do so and to express themselves.”

He added that he has “nothing but sympathy” for the families, but he doesn’t believe the bill in New Jersey, which passed the Democratic controlled state legislature, was an, “effective way to deal with it so I vetoed it; it’s a difference of opinion, but it’s nothing personal.”

Foley chose not to reveal if he agreed with Christie’s veto.

Christie was also asked if he thought he could be a viable 2016 presidential candidate if he did not veto the bill and he answered, “I don’t make decisions on what bills to sign or veto based upon someone’s perception of viability.”

The protesters gathered at the bottom of a private road leading to the home of the fundraiser for the Republican Governors Association, where Christie serves as chairman. Katherine Morosky of Newtown, accompanied by her 7-year-old daughter Marie, held a politically-charged sign that read, “Stop Playing Politics, Children’s Lives are Not Trivial, Fewer Bullets Save Lives.”

It was a reference to what Christie said in his veto message, writing he could, “not support such a trivial approach to the sanctity of human life.”

Marie was not a student at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, but her mother claimed she was friends with five of the children killed, as well as some of the surviving children who were able to escape when Adam Lanza reloaded. Morosky said she was “extremely offended” by Christie’s veto, adding mental health is an issue, but there is still “easy access” for those with mental illness to ammunition making it possible to “kill 25 people in five minutes.”

“It’s such easy access to those weapons used for war and you can take out a lot more people out that way,” Morosky said of the higher-capacity magazines. “It makes a very big difference.”

Sandy Hook resident Cindy Carlson held a sign that read, “My Kids are Not Trivial,” and said those moments when a murderer reloads is crucial. “The difference is when a person with bad intentions must stop and reload it gives potential victims time to escape,” she said.

Christie and Foley appeared at the Glory Days Diner, appropriate for the devoted Bruce Springsteen fan. He was greeted there by a supportive crowd, with one woman shouting at the possible 2016 presidential candidate, “Hey good looking!” Another woman told him she once received a kiss from President George W. Bush so she needed one from him. He obliged saying to the cameras surrounding him, “You gotta do what you gotta do” with a smile.

Foley ran previously in 2010 losing to current Gov. Dannel Malloy by just over 6,000 votes. One of the fundraisers Monday night was for the RGA and the other was to raise money for the Connecticut GOP, that one was held at the home of former hedge fund manager Brian Olson.

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Staff Sgt. Ryan Pitts Awarded Medal of Honor for Valor in Afghanistan

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) — Staff Sgt. Ryan Pitts is the sole survivor of an outpost that came under fierce attack in one of the bloodiest battles of the war in Afghanistan. On Monday, the former paratrooper became the ninth living recipient of the Medal of Honor for actions in Iraq or Afghanistan.

“In Ryan Pitts you see the humility and the loyalty that define America’s men and women in uniform,” President Obama said at a White House ceremony.

Pitts insists that the honor is not his alone. It’s a distinction he shares with the men he fought alongside that fateful day in the summer of 2008. Nine died and 27 were wounded, including Pitts, in the battle of Wanat, one of the fiercest of the entire war.

“Valor was everywhere that day and the real heroes are the nine men who made the ultimate sacrifice so the rest of us could return home,” Pitts told reporters Monday. “It is their names, not mine, that I want people to know.”

It was before dawn when hundreds of Taliban fighters launched their attack, far outnumbering the United States troops defending their partially completed base outside the village of Wanat in northeastern Afghanistan.

For nearly two hours, Pitts, who was 22 years old at the time, helped fend off the enemy fighters from his isolated observation post. After suffering severe shrapnel wounds and being patched up by a fellow soldier who was later killed, Pitts crawled from position to position, lobbing grenades and firing at the enemy, resigning himself to certain death, the president said.

“As the insurgents moved in, Ryan picked up a grenade, pulled the pin, and held that live grenade — for a moment, then another, then another — finally hurling it so they couldn’t throw it back. And he did that again. And he did it again,” the president explained.

“Unable to stand, Ryan pulled himself up on his knees and manned a machine gun. Soldiers from the base below made a daring run, dodging bullets and explosions, and joined the defense. But now the enemy was inside the post — so close they were throwing rocks at the Americans, so close they came right up to the sandbags. Eight American soldiers had now fallen. And Ryan Pitts was the only living soldier at that post,” Obama said.

The enemy got so close that Pitts could hear their voices. “He whispered into the radio he was the only one left and was running out of ammo,” Obama said.

The battle later spurred an investigation and, as the president noted, a report concluded Wanat had “significant vulnerabilities.” As Commander-in-Chief, the president said one way to honor the fallen is, “by heeding the lessons of Wanat.”

“When this nation sends our troops into harm’s way, they deserve a sound strategy and a well-defined mission. And they deserve the forces and support to get the job done,” he said. “That’s how we can truly honor all those who gave their lives that day. … They’re hard lessons, but they’re ones that are deeply engrained in our hearts.”

Pitts now lives in Nashua, N.H., where he works in business development for a software company. He is married and has a 1-year-old son, Lucas. Monday is also his second wedding anniversary.

“As Ryan put it, it’s going to be tough topping this one, as anniversaries go,” the president joked. “But let me just give you a piece of advice as somebody who now has been married for over 20 years: You should try.”

ABC News | ABC Sports News

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Will National Guard Help Stop Illegal Immigrant Influx in Texas?

Office of the Governor Rick Perry(AUSTIN, Texas) — Texas Gov. Rick Perry calls it “Operation Strong Safety,” but critics say it’s closer to “operation symbolic act.”

Perry announced Monday that 1,000 National Guard troops would be deployed over the next month to the southern border. But by law, they can’t make arrests and instead will act only as a “visual deterrent.”

“What we’re asking the National Guard to do is to be a force multiplier, to be there as a partner with the law enforcement,” Perry said Monday at a news conference. “Which they have done multiple times before.”

In 2006 and 2010, presidents Bush and then Obama ordered the National Guard in to assist border patrol. In 2006, operation Jump Start brought 6,000 National Guard to work mainly in non-law enforcement duties, relieving the Border Patrol agents in those positions to move into border security rules.

But because the governor, and not the president, has ordered this deployment, the troops are unable to move into U.S. Customs and Border Protection jurisdiction without a coordinated effort with the federal government.

The Texas general in charge confirmed his troops cannot physically detain or send any of the thousands of surging immigrants, many of them mothers and children, back across the border.

“We are planning on referring and deterring — so deterring with a visible presence,” Major General Nichols, Adjutant General of Texas National Guard, said at the news conference.

And the troops cannot use their weapons to stop illegal immigration.

“You are not allowed to fire on someone who is fleeing away,” Thad Bingel, former Chief of Staff for U.S. Customs and Border Protection under President Bush told ABC News Monday. “They can use their weapons in self-defense only if they are threatened by physical harm.”

Ralph Basham, CBP commissioner under Bush (2006-2009), agreed, telling ABC News that they weapons they carry “are strictly for self-defense,” and the National Guard is, “limited in terms of what they could do.”

“They could best be used to go down and literally set up tents and medical facilities and housing and food services. And things that the border patrol are being asked to do today,” Basham said.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest characterized the governor’s action Monday as a publicity stunt.

“What we’re hopeful is that Gov. Perry will not just take these kinds of steps that are generating the kind of headlines I suspect he intended, but will actually take the kinds of steps that will be constructive to solving the problem over the long term,” Earnest said.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson testified in June that he’d want to, “understand better what the options are for the use of the Guard,” and cited concerns about their limitations.

The National Guard, “can’t be directly involved in law enforcement,” he said. “And Department of Defense has a lot to say about this as well. It’s their resource, comes out of their budget. Lot of demands on the Guard, particularly in this season, hurricane season.”

The Posse Comitatus Act of 1878 (updated in 1981) works to limit the federal government’s use of the military to enforce state laws and, as such, bars it from performing tasks of civilian law enforcement such as arrests or apprehensions.

That could be why the head of the Border Patrol made it clear in a June interview with ABC News that the Guard isn’t needed.

“I don’t see the National Guard being particularly good help in this instance,” said CBP Commissioner Gil Kerlikowske. “Many of these people are not people that we’re having to apprehend or chase, these are people that are turning themselves in asking for some type of status here in the United States.”

Perry maintains that the use of the Guard will serves as, “a deterrent effect on criminal and illegal activity along the border,” at a cost of $12 million per month — a figure he plans to ask the federal government to reimburse.

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Close Encounters with Vladimir Putin: What Joe Biden and George W. Bush Saw

Sean Gallup/Getty Images(MOSCOW) — When Vice President Joe Biden and former President George W. Bush both looked into Russian President Vladimir Putin’s eyes, they each saw very different things.

Biden recently told The New Yorker‘s Evan Osnos of a 2011 meeting with Putin. The vice president got close to the Russian leader — so close, in fact, that the two nearly touched noses. Here’s what happened:

To illustrate his emphasis on personality as a factor in foreign affairs, Biden recalled visiting Putin at the Kremlin in 2011: “I had an interpreter, and when he was showing me his office I said, ‘It’s amazing what capitalism will do, won’t it? A magnificent office!’ And he laughed. As I turned, I was this close to him.” Biden held his hand a few inches from his nose. “I said, ‘Mr. Prime Minister, I’m looking into your eyes, and I don’t think you have a soul.’”

“You said that?” I asked. It sounded like a movie line.

“Absolutely, positively,” Biden said, and continued, “And he looked back at me, and he smiled, and he said, ‘We understand one another.’” Biden sat back, and said, “This is who this guy is!”

Although Biden looked at Putin and saw no soul, more than a decade earlier then-President George W. Bush saw something very different when he came eye-to-eye the Russian leader:

“I looked the man in the eye. I found him to be very straight forward and trustworthy and we had a very good dialogue,” Bush said according a BBC account. “I was able to get a sense of his soul. He’s a man deeply committed to his country and the best interests of his country and I appreciate very much the frank dialogue and that’s the beginning of a very constructive relationship.”

Putin is now coming under increasing pressure from world leaders in the wake of the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 last week.

On Monday, President Obama ratcheted up his rhetoric: “Given its direct influence over the separatists, Russia, and President Putin in particular, has direct responsibility to compel them to cooperate with the investigation,” President Obama said.

And over the weekend Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein, D-California, was even more blunt: “I would say, Putin, you have to man up. You should talk to the world. You should say this was a mistake, if it was a mistake,” she said in an interview with CNN.

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Obama Reveals His Top Five Secrets to Success

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) — Speaking at an event Monday promoting My Brother’s Keeper, an initiative designed to help at-risk youth navigate tough school districts, President Obama reflected on the principles that got him all the way to the White House.

The president, who has remarked that he sees himself reflected in struggling young men of color just like the ones who crowded into D.C. Walker Jones Educate Campus to hear him speak, said he hopes the My Brother’s Keeper Mentor program can keep boys from slipping through the cracks.

Here are Obama’s top five tips for success:

1. Find Out What Makes You Tick

“Figure out what it is that you care about passionately, something that you think is important to you, because if nothing’s important to you, you’re not going to put in the work,” the president told the kids.

“Everybody’s got different talents and everybody’s got different passions, and some — part of the goal of My Brother’s Keeper is to expose you to more things so that you don’t think that the only thing you can be passionate about is what you’re seeing on TV,” the president said.

“Part of the problem with young men of color is oftentimes the only thing they see to be passionate about is basketball or rap,” he added. “We want to make sure you get exposed to graphic design or you’re exposed to engineering or you’re exposed to being a lawyer, so that maybe you will be passionate about that.”

2. Practice Makes Perfect

“Work — it’s a pretty simple concept,” Obama said. “There is nothing worthwhile where it just falls in your lap.”

Explaining that just as basketball players must build muscle in order to nail the shot, academics must hone their craft. But the metaphor, the president noted, often gets lost in translation.

“It’s interesting, you talk to the young people about basketball, and they kind of understand that [practice is necessary],” the president said.

“But for some reason, you think the same doesn’t apply to school. There is no reason why you should think that you will be a good reader if you don’t read a lot, and read books that are hard, as opposed to just books that are easy. There’s no reason to think that you will be good at mathematics if you are not doing math problems and pushing yourself and trying math problems that are hard, not just ones that are easy,” Obama said, drawing applause from the crowd.

3. There Is No ‘I’ in Team

“Understand that you will not achieve by yourself, which means that you’ve got to be able to invest in relationships with other people who you can learn from, who will support you, who you will support in turn,” said Obama, who said he plans to take on a mentee through the My Brother’s Keeper program.

“You have to expand your network of people who can support you, give you ideas, buck you up when you’re down,” he continued. “Of course, the flip side is, though, you can’t just take. You also got to give. So you’ve got to show enthusiasm. You’ve got to want to be involved. You’ve got to be curious.”

4. No Slacking

“I don’t care how bad your school is. There’s a teacher in there somewhere who, if you went up to her or him and said, ‘I really want to learn. Can you help me?’ that teacher would snatch you up in a second, because they want to feel like they’re doing a good job,” the president said.

“But if you’re just sitting in the back of the class slouching and complaining about how bad the school is, well, then, you know — you may be right to be angry that you don’t have enough school supplies or the building’s bad or what have you — but it’s not going to help you,” he said.

5. Haters Gonna Hate, but That’s Okay

“When you’re young, it is natural to care a lot about what your peers think of you. That’s, that’s just human. And there’s nothing wrong with that,” said Obama, who is currently grappling with some of the lowest approval numbers of his presidency.

“At some point, to be a man or a woman, to be an adult, to be a full-grown person, you have to move beyond just what other people think and you have to make a determination about what do you believe in,” he said.

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Members of Congress Plan to Live on Minimum Wage for a Week

Architect of the Capitol(WASHINGTON) — A trio of Democratic politicians are about to find out what it’s like to be poor.

Former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, Rep. Jan Schkowsky, D-Ill., and Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, announced Monday that they plan to “step into the shoes of a minimum wage worker and live for one week on just $77.”

It’s part of the Live the Wage Challenge starting Thursday— marking the fifth anniversary since Congress last increased the nation’s minimum wage.

From July 24 to July 30, the three politicians will chronicle their experiences on social media in an effort to shed light on the challenges facing minimum wage workers across the country.

A minimum wage of $10.10 pegged to cost-of-living increases would provide Americans who “work hard and play by the rules” a chance at joining the middle class, Ryan said during a call with reporters.

Strickland echoed the congressman’s sentiments, saying that full-time workers should not have to “live in poverty or have to choose between food and electricity every month.”

The federal minimum wage in the United States is currently set at $7.25 an hour — and has not been increased by Congress since 2009. The federal minimum wage for tipped workers has remained at $2.13 an hour since 1991.

According to a statement on its website, “the Live the Wage Challenge has called on elected officials, community leaders, advocates and anyone concerned about the growing inequality in this country to walk in the shoes of a minimum wage worker by living on a minimum wage budget for one week.”

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