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Entrepreneur: Boost Calif. wages to $12-an-hour

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Democrats want to make an increase in the minimum wage a major campaign issue in 2014, but in California a proposal to push the mark to $12 an hour is coming from a registered Republican who once tried to unseat Gov. Pete Wilson.

Silicon Valley entrepreneur Ron Unz says a wage jump would nourish the economy and lift low-paid workers from dependency on food stamps and other government aid.

Democrats in Congress are pushing a bill to raise the $7.25 federal minimum to over $10 an hour.

Unz is a former publisher of The American Conservative magazine with a history of against-the-grain political activity, including pushing a 1998 ballot proposal that dismantled California's bilingual education system.

His proposal has not yet qualified for the state ballot.

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