(NEWSER– Fast food workers in 100 cities will walk off the job today, and protesters will show up in 100 more to call for drastically higher wages for the nation's lowest-paid workers. The movement started with a small strike in New York City last year, and has ballooned since, with an August edition hitting 60 cities—though the AP notes that in many of those places only a few people actually showed up. But this time the strikes come as the living wage issue is heating up. "I think there's growing recognition that a nerve has been touched," the head of the Service Employees International Union tells the New York Times. "This isn't going to blow over." Here's how that debate is shaking out:

  • Fifty-three Democratic congressman sent a letter to executives at McDonald's, Wendy's, Burger King, Domino's, and YUM! Brands yesterday calling on them to increase wages, Bloomberg reports.
  • President Obama himself jumped into the fray in a speech yesterday, saying that fast food employees "work their tails off and are still living barely above poverty."