The Evening Rush for Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014

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Demonstrators rally for a higher minimum wage in New York this past December. | Richard Drew/AP Photo

Minimum wage in center stage

Democrats are poised to make raising the minimum wage a focal point of the 2014 midterms, and Illinois’ Republican candidates are more than happy to jump into the fray. It began with Republican Bruce Rauner calling for a $1 cut to the state’s minimum wage – direct opposition to Gov. Pat Quinn’s push to raise it to $10/hour. Before the end of the day, both Bill Brady and Karen Lewis weighed in.

[Rauner: Cut state’s hourly minimum wage by $1 to be ‘competitive’]

[Brady hammers Rauner, Quinn for wanting to change state’s minimum wage]

[Karen Lewis: Try to live on $7.25 a day for 90 days]

City to lease space to Hadiya Pendleton Foundation for $1

Hadiya Pendleton’s father got a gift from City Hall on Wednesday, three weeks before the one-year anniversary of the 15-year-old’s murder. [Sun-Times]

Alderman: Homicide drop ‘means crap’

Ald. Carrie Austin (34th) isn’t a big fan of the statistics showing a drop in homicides. [Voices]

Cabbie business booming

Chiberia was a terrible time for all of us, unless you drive a cab. [DNAinfo Chicago]

Rise and fall of UNO’s patron

One man turned a small activist group into the nation’s biggest Hispanic charter school operator. And then the trouble started. [Chicago Magazine]

Frank Thomas, Greg Maddux in the Hall of Fame

Two iconic Chicago baseball legends were elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in their first year of eligibility. [Thomas | Maddux]

Dennis Rodman serenades Kim Jong-un

Just watch the video. [Sun-Times]

The force was allegedly with Tupac

A longstanding rumor about Tupac Shakur auditioning for the Star Wars prequels got new life this week. [A.V. Club]

Insane Clown Posse, ACLU team up

The two groups have filed a lawsuit after the FBI included Juggalos in its 2011 Gang Threat Assessment Report. [Chicagoist]

The Bright One

A demolition worker found what appeared to be a human skull in Logan Square. Turns out it was a Halloween decoration. [Sun-Times]


Sudoku; Weather; Traffic; CTA; Metra; Flight delays

And finally

This adorable panda cub taking its first steps, though. [Youtube]

The Latest
A man was driving ‘at a high rate of speed’ in the 8900 block of South Ashland Avenue about 9:52 p.m. Saturday when he hit the side of an apartment building, police said.
A man was shot in an altercation in the 0-100 block of West 87th Street about 7:54 p.m. Sunday. He was in fair condition at Stroger Hospital, police said.
A two-vehicle crash occurred about 2:15 a.m. Sunday in the westbound lanes of Palatine Road near Wheeling Road, according to police. One person suffered serious injuries.
Chicago firefighters responding to reports of an apartment building fire Sunday at 6430 South Stony Island Ave. put the fire down by 8:51 p.m., officials said.