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Wednesday, April 1, 2015

 11:05 AM 

PPP: Cruz eats into Walker's support with national Republicans

Ted Cruz has eaten into Scott Walker’s support with Republicans nationally, according to a new poll from the Dem firm Public Policy Polling.

A month ago, Walker led the GOP pack with support from 25 percent of Republicans. In the latest poll, Walker was still on top at 20 percent with Jeb Bush next at 17 percent and Cruz at 16 percent. Ben Carson and Rand Paul were next at 10 percent each.

A month ago, Cruz was at 5 percent in the firm’s polling. 

PPP also found a jump in support for Cruz among those who identify themselves as “very conservative.” The Texas senator was at 11 percent with those voters a month ago, but now leads the GOP pack at 33 percent. Walker was next at 25 percent after leading that group a month ago at 37 percent. 

PPP said almost all of Walker’s drop in overall GOP support has come from those moving toward Cruz.

Fifty-four percent of GOP primary voters had a favorable impression of Walker, while 14 percent had a negative one and 31 percent were not sure. Only Marco Rubio had a higher favorability rating among those tested at 55 percent.

Last month, Walker’s split was 51-10-39.

The firm surveyed 443 GOP primary voters Thursday through Tuesday, and the margin of error for the survey was plus or minus 4.7 percentage points. It was conducted using automated phone interviews and some conducted over the internet to reach those who don’t have landlines.

-- By JR Ross


 11:02 AM 

Walker Watch 2016 Wednesday headline roundup

Headlines today about Gov. Scott Walker's likely presidential bid focus on a complaint over 527 fundraising, Indiana's religious freedom law and an allergy that could dog Walker on the campaign trail.


- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Election complaints filed against Scott Walker, Jeb Bush

- Wisconsin State Journal: Complaint alleges Scott Walker is already a presidential candidate

- Money rules: Unofficial candidates can raise loads of cash 

- New York Times: Scott Walker, Allergic to Dogs, May Run Against Political History

- NBC First Read: Where 2016 Contenders Stand on Indiana's Religious Freedom Law 

- New York Daily News: 2016 Republican candidates support controversial Indiana law

- US News and World Report: 4 Game-Changers for the 2016 Presidential Campaign


- Sarah Rodriguez: Fresh faces fare well among voters in N.H.


 8:38 AM 

Group files complaint against Walker, others over 527 fundraising

The Campaign Legal Center has filed a complaint against Gov. Scott Walker and three others, arguing they have violated federal campaign finance laws through their early flirtations with bids for the presidency. 

Various contribution limits kick in once a candidate begins testing the waters for a bid, including no more than $2,700 per individual donor. 

The center argues argues Walker, Jeb Bush, Martin O'Malley and Rick Santorum have already met the threshold to be considered candidates and have been raising money well in excess of the limits. 

"These 2016 presidential contenders must take the American people for fools -- flying repeatedly to Iowa and New Hampshire to meet with party leaders and voters, hiring campaign staff and raising millions of dollars from deep-pocketed mega donors, all the while denying that they are even 'testing the waters' of a presidential campaign," said Paul S. Ryan, the group's senior counsel. 

Walker created a 527 group, Our American Revival, as he travels the country. 

"Governor Walker has been talking to Americans about his reform-minded principles in Wisconsin through the issues based organization Our American Revival," said OAR spokeswoman Kirsten Kukowski. "If there are any announcements about his future he will do it in accordance with the law." 

Read the complaint filed against Walker: http://bit.ly/1yy5mBJ 

See the release: http://bit.ly/1I1Ajqh 


Tuesday, March 31, 2015

 6:00 PM 

Greater Wisconsin slams Daley in new TV ad for sentence given man who beat two kids

The Greater Wisconsin Committee is up with a new TV ad that slams Supreme Court challenger James Daley for the sentence he gave a man who beat two young children.

The narrator opens the spot by saying it “was a horrific crime” and describes two young children being savagely beaten over an eight-hour period “until they blacked out.”

The narrator says the abuser faced 25 years in prison, but Daley, a Rock County judge, “agreed to a deal” and the man got only one year in jail.

“The victim’s mother called Daley’s sentence a complete failure of the justice system,” the narrator says to close the spot. “Tell Judge James Daley: Protect victims, not child abusers.”

-- By JR Ross

 11:30 AM 

Walker Watch 2016 Tuesday headline roundup

Tuesday's stories about Gov. Scott Walker's likely presidential run focus on immigration, a Bush/Walker match-up and a new Walker "fan club."


- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Scott Walker reiterates his opposition to amnesty

- Boston Herald: Franklin Pierce-Herald poll surprise: Bush no longer front-runner in N.H

- National Journal: How the 2016 Republicans Will Fight Over the Future of Obamacare 

- Capital Times: As Scott Walker gears up for 2016 run, Tonette prepares for the spotlight

- Wisconsin State Journal: Scott Walker has an (unofficial) fan club. Is that a good thing? 

- Bloomberg: The Conservative Group Behind Scott Walker's Political Rise


- Conor Friedersdorf: Scott Walker Tells Republicans What They Want to Hear on Foreign Policy

- Jim Newell: Scott Walker's "amnesty" problem

- Matt Lewis: What Jeb Gets That Walker Doesn't

- Greg Sargent: Scott Walker versus Jeb Bush for soul of the GOP?

- Jennifer Rubin: The newest smear against Scott Walker

- Robert Laszewski: Scott Walker's Medicaid Policy Says A Lot About How He Would Govern

- Steve Benen: Scott Walker starts steering clear of reporters


 8:27 AM 

Quinnipiac poll of swing states shows Clinton leading Walker

Gov. Scott Walker trailed Hillary Clinton in Quinnipiac University polling of three swing states. 

The surveys found overall Clinton's margins over GOP candidates had dropped since early February in the wake of questions over her use of personal email while secretary of state. 

Jeb Bush was the only GOP candidate to top Clinton in Florida, where he was backed by 45 percent of respondents and she was supported by 42 percent. Walker trailed her 46-40. 

In Ohio, Rand Paul was Clinton's closest challenger, and she led him 46-41. She led Walker 49-38. 

In Pennsylvania, 45 percent backed Paul to 44 percent for Clinton. She topped Walker there 46-41. 

The polls were conducted March 17-28 via live interviews over land lines and cell phones. More than 1,000 surveys of voters were conducted in each state, and the margin of error for each sample was plus or minus 3 percentage points. 

See more: 


 12:55 PM 

Walker Watch 2016 Monday headline roundup

News and opinion pieces from the weekend about Gov. Scott Walker's likely presidential bid focus on his visit to Texas, immigration and how he stacks up against Jeb Bush.


- ABC: Gov. Walker in Texas, out of sight during immigration flap

- Texas Tribune: Greg Abbott, Scott Walker Tour Mexico-Texas Border

- AP: Are the early primary states a big deal anymore?

- New York Times: Jeb Bush and Scott Walker Point G.O.P. to Contrary Paths 

- Miami Herald: Meet Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, the conservative threat to Jeb Bush

- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: As legislator, Scott Walker wanted to upend primary schedule

- The Hill: Scott Walker's partner in power

- Politico: The crushing defeat that shaped Scott Walker


- Greg Sargent: Scott Walker immigration mess captures GOP's broader dilemma

- John McCormick: Behind Scott Walker's Border Visit Is His Immigration Muddle

- Steve Benen: Scott Walker's immigration position is as clear as mud

- PolitiFact: Scott Walker, Greg Abbott and the Truth-O-Meter

- Jessie Opoien: Scott Walker suggests being an Eagle Scout has prepared him to be commander in chief

- Matt Carpenter: President Scott Walker Will Overwhelm ISIS With Sheer Weight Of His Flip Flops 

- Oliver Willis: Media Ignores Scott Walker's Dark Money Controversy

- Joan Walsh: The rich's Scott Walker bungle: Why plutocrats fell for the wrong GOP governor

- Dave Zweifel: Scott Walker joins ranks of trickle-down cranks


 12:00 PM 

Daley raised $148,557 in pre-election period

Rock County Judge James Daley raised $148,557 for his Supreme Court campaign over a seven-week period leading up to the April election.

Daley's campaign finance report for the pre-election period shows he also spent $169,036 over the period, which covers activity between Feb. 3 and March 23.

Daley had $67,948 cash on hand with $6,500 in outstanding loans.

The deadline is today for spring candidates to file their pre-election reports with the GAB. Justice Ann Walsh Bradley's campaign said her numbers would be available later today.

UPDATE: This post has been updated with Daley's correct numbers for cash-on-hand and the amount spent during the period, based off the report he filed with the GAB. The original post was based off the cover sheet his campaign provided, but those figures were incorrect.

-- By JR Ross

 11:45 AM 

Walker, Bush even in New Hampshire

A new poll of New Hampshire GOP voters has Gov. Scott Walker tied with Jeb Bush.

The survey from Franklin Pierce University and the Boston Herald found 15 percent of respondents backed Bush and Walker, while U.S. Sen. Rand Paul was close behind at 13 percent. Chris Christie was the only other candidate to crack double digits at 10 percent.

Forty-eight percent of Republicans had a favorable view of Walker, while 16 percent had an unfavorable one. Thirteen percent had no opinion, while 22 percent did not recognize him. Bush had a higher favorability rating at 53 percent, but 37 percent of GOP primary voters had a negative view of him. Eight percent were undecided, while 2 percent didn't recognize him.

The poll of 429 GOP primary voters was conducted March 22-25 by land line and cell phones. The margin of error was plus or minus 4.7 percentage points.

  -- By JR Ross


 10:26 AM 

Walker noncommittal on 'religious freedom' law for Wisconsin, again talks stance on immigration

Gov. Scott Walker today was noncommittal on whether he believes Wisconsin should adopt something similar to Indiana's "religious freedom" law, saying it's not something that's been debated at any length here "but we'll have to see in the future."

Indiana's law, officially the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, has drawn scrutiny in recent weeks with opponents saying it would allow businesses to discriminate against gays and lesbians. Some of the law's backers have disputed that, saying the law was only intended to protect religion from government intrusion.

Asked if businesses should have the option to refuse service to customers, such as gays, based on religious grounds, Walker replied, "Well again, in our state, there's a balance between wanting to make sure there is not discrimination but at the same time, respecting religious freedoms. We do that different ways than what they’ve done in the state of Indiana, and certainly that’s going to be part of the debate here and across the country.”

Walker, who was in Milwaukee for a public appearance, would not say whether he would sign such a law, saying he did not expect such a bill coming “any time soon.”

Walker also attempted to clarify his stance on immigration after questions were raised last week if he had privately backed a path to citizenship for those in the country illegally after saying publicly he did not support such an option.

He said he first backed securing the border, noting he toured the area with Texas Gov. Greg Abbott late last week. He called it a security concern, saying cartels are trafficking drugs, weapons and humans across the border.

Once secure, the government could move forward with enforcing laws already on the books through an e-verify system.

"I do not believe in amnesty for citizenship," Walker said. "I believe that if someone wants to become a citizen they need to go to their country of origin and come in the system just like anyone else, and then beyond that, I think that's going to take a lot of work and a lot of effort. Then the next president and the Congress are going to have to look at working together and setting a policy on what to do for others who are seeking something other than citizenship."

-- By Kay Nolan


Friday, March 27, 2015

 5:03 PM 

Walker: Texas border tour shows need for enhanced security

Gov. Scott Walker's political operation said his tour of the Texas-Mexico border showed him "more bodies and technology are needed" to secure the border.

Walker made the tour -- his first visit to the border -- with Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott.

The full email from Walker's political team is below:

Good afternoon, this morning Governor Walker toured the Texas-Mexico border with Texas Governor Greg Abbott – his first trip to the Mexican border. Governors Walker and Abbott first discussed the trip as a way for Governor Walker to see firsthand the crisis at the border and to talk with local officials about the challenges they are facing. Governor Walker received a briefing on the ground as well as an aerial briefing. Here are a few take-aways:

First and foremost, Governor Walker believes it is painfully clear Washington, D.C. hasn't done its job securing our borders.

Officials on the ground are doing an excellent job with the resources they have, but more bodies and technology are needed.

In the past Governor Walker has talked about securing the borders to protect the safety of our citizens – it's a security issue even more than an immigration issue. During his briefing today, it was made even more evident that the broken border is a safety issue not only as it relates to potential extremists, but also continued drug cartel violence. Drug cartels pose a long-term danger to border states and securing the border is vital.


 5:01 PM 

Walker Watch 2016 Friday headline roundup

Gov. Scott Walker's immigration stance and foreign affairs were the focus of Friday's news and opinion pieces relating to Walker's likely run for the GOP presidential nomination.


- Wisconsin State Journal:  Walker spokeswoman Kukowski disputes story that he reversed his immigration flip-flop 

- Reuters: Walker Denies Changing Stance On Undocumented Immigrants 

- CNN: Walker backs pathway to citizenship at private dinner

- Wall Street Journal: Scott Walker Adjusts Stance on Immigration at Private Dinner

- Washington Post: Scott Walker softens immigration stance, dinner participants say

- CNN: Jim Talent to Scott Walker's team

- USA Today: Scott Walker: I'd reject Iran nuclear deal on 'Day One' 

- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Scott Walker wades into foreign policy as profile rises

- NBC First Read: A foreign-policy election (more or less) is upon us


- Jessie Opoien: Scott Walker spokeswoman disputes report on immigration shift, says his position hasn't changed

- Dara Lind: Scott Walker wasn't lying on immigration. He just hoped GOP voters misunderstood him. 

- Ken McIntyre: Scott Walker Lands Former Senator as National Security Expert for 2016 Race

- PolitiFact: Has PolitiFact rated Scott Walker the nation's "most factually-challenged" politician?

- Jennifer Rubin: Rick Perry and Scott Walker get more impressive with time 


Thursday, March 26, 2015

 1:41 PM 

Suffolk: Bush 19, Walker 14 in New Hampshire

A new Suffolk University poll has Jeb Bush and Scott Walker at the head of the GOP pack in New Hampshire.

Nineteen percent of GOP primary voters backed Bush, while 14 percent supported Walker and 7 percent backed Rand Paul.

As with other GOP presidential primary polls, Walker led Bush among Republicans who described themselves as conservatives; 20 percent of those voters backed Walker, while 14 percent supported Bush. Meanwhile, 46 percent of Republicans had a positive view of Walker, while 15 percent had a negative view. Bush's split was 54-27. 

The statewide survey of 500 likely GOP presidential primary voters was conducted Saturday through Tuesday using live interviews over land lines and cell phones. The margin of error was plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.

-- By JR Ross


 12:19 PM 

Walker Watch 2016 Thursday headline roundup

Gov. Scott Walker's stance on Iran tops news headlines, and columnists in today's roundup opine on Walker's management style and whether he is spending enough time in the state.


- USA Today: Walker: I'd reject Iran nuclear deal on 'Day One'

- The Hill: Walker says he'd reject deal with Iran 'on day one' 

- Madison.com: Charting national search interest in Scott Walker 

- Washington Times: Walker scheduled to tour U.S.-Mexico border Friday  


- James Howerton: The Huge Move Scott Walker Says He'd Make on 'Day One' If Elected President

- Josh Israel: Scott Walker's Spectacular Flip-Flop On Political Contributions From The Gambling Industry

- Chris Rickert: Scott Walker hits the campaign trail armed with what works (for him) 

- Christian Schneider: Walker hasn't left Wisconsin home alone

-  Lisa Kaiser: Scott Walker Can't Run on His Job-Creation Record 

- ELiana Johnson: Scott Walker Is His Own Best Political Operative, and That's a Problem 

- Matt Lewis: Scott Walker Has A Micromanagement Problem 

- Carl Leubsdorf: 7 obstacles Ted Cruz must overcome -- including Scott Walker

- Travis Arbon: Walker speaks to Ariz. Chamber of Commerce behind closed doors

- Benjy Sarlin: Walker fundraises off voter ID victory

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

 2:09 PM 

Walker Watch 2016 Wednesday headline roundup

In today's headlines, Walker's political group hires a former Romney aide, Walker plans a Texas visit and pundits weigh in on John Menard's $1.5 million donation to a group that backed Walker in the recall election.


- Texas Tribune: Texas Gov. Abbott, Walker to Tour Texas-Mexico Border

- Houston Chronicle: Abbott to tour border with potential 2016 contender Walker

- Newsmax: Gov. Scott Walker to Visit Texas-Mexico Border Friday

- Breitbart: Walker Heads to Texas Border with Abbott

- Cap Times: Latest Scott Walker map point: David Koch's oceanside mansion

- Miami Herald: Walker's team picks up a top Romney staffer

- MJS: Walker's political group hires a top Romney staffer

- NBC First Read [5th item]: Why "John Doe" investigation remains a problem for Walker

- Wisconsin State Journal: Report: John Menard gave $1.5 million to conservative group tied to Scott Walker 


- Paul Waldman: If the campaign finance system is scandalous, let's treat it that way

- Jazz Shaw: Another "dark money scandal" hits, this time for Scott Walker 

- Steve Benen: Walker confronts new 'dark money' controversy 

- Charles Pierce: Scott Walker Saves More Money For Menard

- Jessie Opoien: Scott Walker's time: The governor is running for president. Can he win?

- Jamelle Bouie: What Scott Walker Can Teach Hillary Clinton


Tuesday, March 24, 2015

 11:39 AM 

PPP: Walker narrows gap with Bush in Florida, trails Clinton

Scott Walker has narrowed the gap with Jeb Bush in Florida among GOP voters, according to a new survey from the Dem firm Public Policy Polling.

Bush led the GOP field at 25 percent, while Walker was backed by 17 percent. Marco Rubio was next at 15 percent, while Ben Carson was at 12 percent.

The last time PPP did a presidential poll in Florida was June. Since then, Bush’s numbers have dropped 5 percentage points, while Walker’s support has ticked up 10 points.

The firm found only 37 percent of Florida voters think Bush should run for president, while 35 percent believe Rubio should.

The survey also asked about a series of hypothetical general election match ups between Dem Hillary Clinton and the GOP field. She had an edge of between 2 and 8 points on each of the Republicans she was paired with. Rubio was the closest, down 48-46, while Walker trailed her 49-41. 

The poll also paired Walker with Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who has said she will not run. It found 42 percent backed the Massachusetts senator, while 41 percent favored Walker. Against Vice President Joe Biden, Walker was tied at 43 percent apiece.

The survey also found the guv is still relatively unknown in Florida. Thirty-three percent of voters had a favorable opinion of him, 28 percent an unfavorable opinion and 39 percent were not sure.

The poll of 923 registered Florida voters was conducted March 19-22. The sample included 425 GOP primary voters and 371 Dems. The margin of error was plus or minus 3.2 percentage points for the general election questions, 4.8 percentage points for the GOP sample and 5.1 points for the Dem sample. Eighty percent of the interviews were conducted over the phone, while 20 percent were done over the Internet.

-- By JR Ross


 11:09 AM 

Walker Watch 2016 Tuesday headline roundup

'Dark money,' voter ID and Ted Cruz are the focus of the latest stories surrounding Gov. Scott Walker's likely presidential run.


- Wisconsin State Journal: Scott Walker planning to return to South Carolina on May 9 

- The State: Scott Walker coming to Greenville in May

- Wisconsin Radio Network: Waiting for Scott Walker to announce his presidential run

- Yahoo News: Secret $1.5 million donation from Wisconsin billionaire uncovered in Scott Walker dark-money probe

- MJS: Report: Menards owner gave $1.5 million to pro-Walker group


- Elias Isquith: Ted Cruz’s 'Scott Walker' problem

- James Beattie: Walker Compliments Cruz Before Saying Washington Needs A ‘Fresh Face’

- John Nolte: Voter ID: Supreme Court Hands Scott Walker Another Win

- Jason Howerton: Supreme Court Hands Scott Walker Big Victory on Wisconsin’s Voter ID Law

- Perry Bacon Jr.: Should Republicans Believe Scott Walker's Story?

- Scott Keyes: Scott Walker Deputy Admits Clean Energy States ‘Have A Competitive Advantage’

- Tom Clementi: Check Walker’s motives on energy choices

- Robert Leonard: 'The Internet is a dark place' says former Walker aide Mair


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