MINNEAPOLIS - President Barack Obama's visit later this week to Minnesota will include a visit with a Minneapolis woman identified so far only as Rebekah, who wrote a letter to the president about the struggles of working parents.
The administration made a video that featured the woman's letter, but identified her only as someone with a husband and children who wrote about how wages aren't keeping pace with the cost of living.
"I'm writing you to let you know what it's like for us out here in the middle of the country and I hope you will listen," President Obama tells viewers in the video, quoting from Rebekah's letter.
"And I think it's going to be wonderful for me to let Rebekah know not only am I listening, but she's not alone out there."
KARE made contact Tuesday with members of several organizations that work on wage issues, and none of them knew who the mystery mom Rebekah could be.
"I've heard a lot about Rebekah today, from people asking the same question," Ken Martin, the chair person of the Minnesota DFL Party, "But I have no idea who she is either!"
Martin said he expects the president to use his Twin Cities visit, as well as his time with Rebekah, to punctuate the push for a higher federal minimum wage. He's likely to call attention to the fact that Minnesota lawmakers passed, and Gov. Mark Dayton signed, a bill raising the minimum wage to $9.50 per hour in three steps between now and August of 2016.
"Everything from the Minimum Wage law, to the Women's Economic Security Act to the Safe and Supportive Schools Act, there's a number of steps we've taken in the last two years that help middle class families," Martin remarked.
"Having the president come here to talk about those issues is never a bad thing."
Two day trip
President Obama will hold a Town Hall Meeting outdoors at Minnehaha Park, home of Minnehaha Falls, on Thursday. It's open to invited guests and news media only.
On Friday he'll deliver a speech on economic policy at the Lake Harriet Bandshell in Minneapolis. Tickets will be made available to the general public beginning at noon on Wednesday at the bandshell.
In between those events he's expected to headline private fundraisers, including one for the congressional campaign arm of the United States House Democrats.
The president is also headlining a fundraiser Thursday for the congressional campaign arm for House Democrats.
The White House is calling Mr. Obama's Minneapolis stops the latest in a series of "day in the life" visits he is making to cities around the US.
His last trip to the Twin Cities, in late February, was at the Union Depot, a renovated historic train station in the capital city that is now serving as a multi-modal transportation hub for buses, light rail and passenger trains. He used the occasion to punctuate the need for investment in infrastructure, that serves the dual purpose of putting people to work and creating new ways for people to get to jobs.