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Friday, January 30, 2015

 9:39 AM 

PPP survey has Walker in top tier of GOP contenders

A new survey out today from the Dem firm Public Policy Polling has Gov. Scott Walker in the top tier of GOP candidates for president.

The poll found 21 percent of GOP primary votes backed Mitt Romney, while 17 percent favored Jeb Bush and 15 percent backed Ben Carson. Walker was in fourth at 11 percent, followed closely by Ted Cruz and Mike Huckabee at 9 percent each.

PPP called Walker the "biggest winner" in the poll, saying the 11 percent appears to be the first time he's registered in double digits for a national poll. He also had the lowest name recognition of the candidates PPP tested, suggesting he has room to grow. 

The poll went into the field before Walker spoke on Saturday to a gathering of Iowa conservatives and finished the day after. The reception to his speech has generated significant buzz nationally since then.

The firm conducted the poll of 400 GOP primary voters Jan. 22-25. Eighty percent of the interviews were done over the phone with 20 percent over the Internet to reach those who don't have land lines. The margin of error for the GOP primary question was plus or minus 4.9 percentage points.

See the release.

UPDATE: Since the poll's release, Romney has announced he will not run for president in 2016. With him out of the mix, the GOP primary looks like this: Bush 21 percent, Carson 16 percent, Walker 14 percent, Huckabee 12 percent and Cruz 10 percent.

-- By JR Ross


Wednesday, January 28, 2015

 4:13 PM 

Walker's 527 posts two-minute video

Gov. Scott Walker’s 527 released a two-minute video in which the narrator says the solutions to the nation’s problems will come from “those incubators of reform, the states.”

The video opens with the narrator saying the nation stands on the brink and is adrift with family incomes declining, dreams stifled and a foreign policy that “apologizes for America,” while projecting weakness abroad.

The narrator goes on to say the country must turn to the states to “reclaim our destiny.”

It closes by using clips of Walker from a speech.

“Those groups in Washington, they tend to measure success by how many people are dependent upon the government,” Walker says as video of President Obama and Hillary Clinton is shown. “We measure success by how many people are no longer dependent on the government.”

-- By JR Ross


Tuesday, January 27, 2015

 12:23 PM 

Walker announces 527 as he considers presidential bid

Gov. Scott Walker today announced the creation of "Our American Revival," a 527 group that will communicate his vision as he looks at a presidential bid.

Walker said operative Rick Wiley, who the guv has brought onto his campaign as an adviser, will serve as the group's executive director.

"Our American Revival encompasses the shared values that make our country great;
limiting the powers of the federal government to those defined in the Constitution while
creating a leaner, more efficient, more effective and more accountable government to
the American people,” Walker said in the announcement.

Along with creating the group, Walker's campaign launched the website http://OurAmericanRevival.com.

-- By JR Ross


Saturday, January 24, 2015

 1:27 PM 

Walker tells conservatives Republicans can win if they go big, bold

Gov. Scott Walker told conservative activists in Iowa Saturday Republicans can win if they go “big and bold” like he did in Wisconsin, saying voters are willing to stand with those who show leadership.

Walker told the Iowa Freedom Summit in Des Moines that Wisconsin saw record job losses before he was elected as families faced double-digit tax increases and special interests controlled things. But Walker said his reforms have made Wisconsin an even better place for his sons to grow up than it was for him.

“If you’re not afraid to go big and go bold, you can actually get results … and if you get the job done, the voters will actually stand up with you,” Walker said.

The governor, one of several presidential contenders who addressed the gathering of conservatives, recounted for activists the death threats he and his family faced over his proposal to largely eliminate collective bargaining for public employees and require them to pay more for their health care and retirements. He thanked them for the donations, help and prayers Walker said many of them sent his way during the protests and the ensuing attempt to recall him.

He also recounted his regular commutes between his home in Wauwatosa and the state Capitol at the time and how handmade signs proclaiming “We Stand With Walker” began showing up first in cornfields and then in places he’d never seen such signs before.

“People knew that we stood up against the powerful special interests and put the power back in their hands, and they thought if they had an elected official who was actually willing to stand up with them maybe it was about time they stood up and said 'we're going to stand with that candidate as well,'” Walker said. “That’s what we need in America.”

Walker was one of several possible 2016 presidential contenders to address the event in Des Moines and promised the crowd, “I’m going to come back many more times in the future.”

He several times reminded activists of his electability in places not normally friendly to GOP candidates. Walker said he pulled 60 percent of the vote in Milwaukee County in 2008 as he won re-election to the executive’s office in a place that later went two-thirds for Barack Obama. He also talked up his three wins in the past four years statewide in Wisconsin, which hasn’t gone for a GOP presidential candidate since 1984.

Walker knocked the media, saying they had only focused during his tenure on the protests over his collective bargaining changes without detailing his “commonsense conservative agenda.” He said he’s passed anti-abortion legislation, defunded Planned Parenthood, pulled back excessive regulations, enacted concealed carry, signed off on the so-called Castle Doctrine and cut taxes by $2 billion.

Walker also said a budget that had a $3.6 billion deficit when he took office is now balanced, though the state faces a shortfall this fiscal year and in the upcoming biennium. He added that “we require in our state by law a photo ID to vote,” though that requirement has not been enforced in any election since February 2012 because of court challenges.

He declared what he called the “Wisconsin Way” is working.

“If they can work in Wisconsin, they can work anywhere in the country,” Walker said.

Watch the speech.

UPDATE: State Dem Chair Mike Tate slammed Walker's speech, saying the Walker who addressed the Iowa crowd sounded much different than the one who ran for re-election in Wisconsin last year. Tate said Walker downplayed issues such as abortion during the campaign and said Walker left out key details for the crowd such as the $2.2 billion deficit the state faces in the upcoming budget and the $283 million shortfall in the current fiscal year.

"Scott Walker can't credibly campaign for president on his ability to lead an 'American revival' when he can't balance the budget in Wisconsin, our wage and private sector job growth lags the nation, and our state has the worst fiscal reserves in the country," Tate said.
-- By JR Ross


Thursday, January 22, 2015

 5:33 PM 

Walker to visit New Hampshire in March

Gov. Scott Walker will travel to New Hampshire in mid-March to address the Granite State's Republican party, his campaign said.

Walker will keynote the party's Grassroots Training and Rally March 14.

"We have enacted bold, successful reforms in Wisconsin and we have a great story to tell," Walker said in a statement released through the New Hampshire GOP. "I look forward to sharing our common sense conservative message with grassroots activists, and I thank the New Hampshire GOP for this exciting opportunity."

It's the latest addition to a series of speeches Walker is giving out-of-state as he considers a presidential run.

See the New Hampshire GOP release


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

 6:33 PM 

Walker plans Israel trip in 2015

Gov. Scott Walker, who's gearing up for an expected presidential bid, said he plans to visit Israel later this year.

Walker said he has had multiple requests to go to Israel from the general counsel's office within the last four years to talk about water technology and other trade missions.

While Walker hasn't yet set a date, he said he'll "probably find a way" to make the trip to Israel.

Any overseas trip Walker takes this year would likely be viewed as an effort to help bolster his foreign policy credentials as part of a presidential run.

Also, Walker's campaign confirmed today he will speak this weekend before the Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce in California.

The group is a nonprofit group that oversees the network of conservative groups organizations linked to the Koch brothers and their associates.

Walker will also address the Iowa Freedom Summit on Saturday in Des Moines.


Friday, January 16, 2015

 1:50 PM 

Wisconsin to host GOP presidential primary debate in November

Wisconsin will host one of nine GOP-sanctioned presidential primary debates, the national party announced today.

The debate is planned for November with Fox Business as the broadcast partner. The RNC did not release any other details on the debate.

The first of the nine is slated for August in Ohio with the ninth announced today planned for Florida in February 2016. The RNC said three other debates are planned, two of them in March 2016 and one with a date and location to be determined.

See the press release for details

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