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Scott Walker Tag

Wisconsin is trying to take measures to deal with illegal immigration and sanctuary cities. Naturally, detractors are describing the initiatives as racist and anti-immigrant. As a result, thousands of protesters showed up at the Wisconsin capitol yesterday, reminiscent of the anti-Walker protests of several years ago. Here's what it looked like in 2011, in case you've forgotten:

We extensively covered the two Wisconsin "John Doe" cases in which prosecutors targeted Scott Walker and conservatives in Wisconsin. John Doe No. 1 concerned Walker's time as Milwaukee County Executive. John Doe No.2 was the more notorious, as a Democratic lead prosecutor unleashed the equivalent of SWAT teams on conservatives, raiding homes, seizing electronic records, and generally terrorizing innocent people. It was a nasty, vicious investigation (note: Michael Lutz in this interview from late April 2015 committed suicide in late July 2015). John Doe No. 2 was definitively shut down by the Wisconsin Supreme Court, which found that it was based on a faulty and unconstitutional legal theory, and employed outrageous tactics that never should be repeated (emphasis added):

There he goes again, going about his business of slaying another progressive dragon. The saga of the two John Doe investigations of Walker, his supporters and almost the entire Wisconsin conservative movement has been covered here dozens of times. It was a nasty, vicious investigation (note: Michael Lutz in this interview from late April 2015 committed suicide in late July). An important chapter was turned when the Wisconsin Supreme Court ordered John Doe No. 2 investigation closed, as a violation of the constitutional protections of free speech and association, Wisconsin Supreme Court stops John Doe investigation against conservatives. Here is the key finding, which completely shreds both the legal theories and motives of the prosecutors, completely vindicates the targets, and praises those who fought back legally against prosecutorial misconduct (emphasis added):

Wisconsin radio talk show host Charlie Sykes interviewed Scott Walker confidante John Hiller on Walker's decision to end the campaign, and on Walker's future. The money quote emphasized at Syke's website, RightWisconsin, was that Walker "Was At Peace With the Whole Thing":
John Hiller, a closer confidant of Scott Walker, told Charlie Sykes that the governor was at peace after making his decision to leave the presidential race. "He was at peace with the whole thing. He probably handled it better than anyone at the table," said Hiller. Hiller, along with Walker's wife Tonette, was in the room with a handful of close friends and advisors when Walker made his decision. Hiller said that Donald Trump, the 24 hour news cycle, the inability to raise money, and some missteps were the reasons Walker believed he no longer had a path to victory. "This is a very similar scenario to 2006," said Hiller. "When you don't have a clear path to victory, it's in everybody's best interest to get out."
But the line which jumped out at me, coming at the end of the interview and which Sykes also quoted, was:

Following her outstanding performance in the CNN GOP debate, Carly Fiorina has overtaken Ben Carson for second place in the GOP field.  According to a CNN poll released today, both Trump and Ben Carson have lost some support, while Carly has surged from 3% early this month to 15%.

Carly Fiorina shot into second place in the Republican presidential field on the heels of another strong debate performance, and Donald Trump has lost some support, a new national CNN/ORC poll shows.

The survey, conducted in the three days after 23 million people tuned in to Wednesday night's GOP debate on CNN, shows that Trump is still the party's front-runner with 24% support. That, though, is an 8 percentage point decrease from earlier in the month when a similar poll had him at 32%.

Fiorina ranks second with 15% support -- up from 3% in early September. She's just ahead of Ben Carson's 14%, though Carson's support has also declined from 19% in the previous poll.

Driving Trump's drop and Fiorina's rise: a debate in which 31% of Republicans who watched said Trump was the loser, and 52% identified Fiorina as the winner.

Another candidate whose numbers have risen since the debate is Marco Rubio.

Those tuned in to Wednesday night's GOP debate hosted by CNN and Salem Media (though mostly CNN) were left wondering what happened to Scott Walker. To be fair, it's a difficult, if not impossible task providing equal airtime to eleven people in any given debate setting. CNN chose to lead with questions about what other contenders thought of Donald Trump. Time that should have been used testing candidates on policy knowledge and prodding their hypothetical handling of various scenarios, was spent goading them into attacking either Trump or one another. A report released by the Media Research Center prior to Wednesday's debate provides an explanation for CNN's unusual line of questioning: CNN loves them some Trump. The MRC analyzed CNN's coverage of the Republican presidential primary and found that 78% of that total coverage was spent on Donald Trump. 7-8-%.

Today, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker will take the stage at a Las Vegas town hall and unveil his national labor reform plan. On Thursday, Walker teased the plan during a speech at Eureka College, saying, "...on Day One, I will stop the government from taking money out of the paychecks of federal employees for political union dues. I've won those battles in Wisconsin and believe me, I won't back down from the battles in Washington." The Walker campaign has done a lot of legwork in the lead-up to today, which tells me that they're banking on this presentation as a vehicle to breathe life back into what many believe is a faltering campaign infrastructure. During an interview with CNN's Jake Tapper this weekend, Walker ran offense as Tapper grilled him on dropping poll numbers and criticism from right-leaning outlets about how his campaign is handling the pressure of the election cycle. Walker's labor reform plan is bold, and detailed. He proposes eliminating the National Labor Relations Board, eliminating federal unions, and requiring new levels of transparency and accountability for all unions. He also backs national right to work laws, and policies that would protect whistleblowers and employees who choose not to join a union. On the taxpayer end, Walker proposes rolling back wage controls (for a savings of $13 billion over ten years,) and ending union control over federal highway contracts (for a savings of 12-18 percent per project.) In an exclusive op-ed at HotAir, Walker touts the plan as a way of protecting workers, while loosening the unions' stranglehold on government:

Governor Scott Walker was interviewed by CNN's Jake Tapper yesterday. The segment began with Walker's dropping poll numbers in Iowa but went on to cover a wide range of topics. Early on, Tapper refers to a column from National Review which charges the Walker campaign with being too lax in response to questions on big issues. That article can be read here. Later, Tapper brings up an op-ed Walker wrote for Hot Air about Obama's weak leadership in the face of violence against police officers. You can read that here. Jake Tapper is widely considered one of the most objective journalists in the mainstream media but as you watch the video below, you'll find him full of leftist talking points. The Koch brothers come up more than once, Walker is forced to defend himself as a career politician as if Hillary and Sanders aren't. Tapper also questions Walker about women's rights, Planned Parenthood, the Syrian refugees and more.

Scott Walker has fallen dramatically in the polls, undone for now by the Trump phenomenon. Numerous pundits, including me, wonder if he can get back up again. Surveying the Republican field, based solely on current polling, Scott Walker should not even be on Hillary's radar. But he is. And she just lashed out at him more viciously than she has any other candidate. Politico reports:
Making her 2015 debut in Scott Walker’s home state of Wisconsin, Hillary Clinton on Thursday unleashed her harshest and most extended diatribe yet against a Republican rival not named Donald Trump, accusing the governor of being a tool of the billionaire Koch brothers. “It seems to me, just observing him, that Governor Walker thinks because he busts unions, starves universities, guts public education, demeans women, scapegoats teachers, nurses, and firefighters, he is some kind of tough guy on a motorcycle, a real leader,” Clinton said to a packed audience at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. “Well, that is not leadership folks. Leadership means fighting for the people you represent."

Scott Walker is no stranger to political challengers or an adversarial press. But what does it do to Walker's national political aspirations when a homegrown reporter who once signed a petition to recall the Governor, happens to be covering his presidential bid for a nationally circulated paper? Tuesday, Media Trackers reported Gannett reporter Madeleine Behr, political writer for USA Today, signed a petition to recall Walker in 2011. Gannett media company knows Behr signed a recall petition because she disclosed as much during the interview process.
A Gannett reporter who writes for both the Appleton Post-Crescent and USA Today covering local and Wisconsin politics, including Gov. Scott Walker’s presidential bid, signed a petition in 2011 to recall Walker from office. Madeleine Behr is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin Madison, and she wrote for a number of publications before joining Gannett earlier this year.

On Thursday night, September 3, 2015, I was a guest on the Todd Herman Show on KTTH 770 AM in Seattle. Todd is a frequent reader of Legal Insurrection, and I appreciated his many compliments. We talked Scott Walker, the John Doe investigations, and Walker's struggling presidential campaign.
"In this case, their entire theory of probable cause was legally invalid, and it was so held by the Wisconsin Supreme Court.... They were trying to find a crime.... [T]he chief of the KGB under Stalin had a very famous quote: Find me the man, and I will find you the crime. And that's what this was. They wanted to get Scott Walker, and they spent four years looking for a crime, and that's not what's supposed to happen in this country.... This was meant to get Scott Walker. They couldn't have cared less what some conservative activist was doing unless they could pin it on Walker."
* * *
"I'm a fan of his, because he just quietly went about his business and completely eviscerated the public sector union movement.

Thursday, a pro-Scott Walker SuperPAC announced the release of its first television ad of the campaign cycle. "Fight & Win," hits Iowa airwaves Tuesday. As the name suggests, the ad highlights Walker's experience successfully fighting unions. Unintimidated PAC announced in early August that, $7 million in television time in Iowa from September 8 through February 1, 2016 (the day of the Iowa Caucus)."

Scott Walker joined Chuck Todd on Meet the Press Sunday. The Wisconsin Governor answered questions ranging from foreign policy to securing the border. Following the interview, numerous headlines suggested Scott Walker was gung-ho about making our northern border a little more pronounced. An Associated Press wire story written by Kevin Freking reported, "Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is putting a new twist on the topic of securing the border, a staple among the GOP candidates running for president, by pointing north." Written to imply Walker introduced the idea of a Canadian border wall as part of a discussion on immigration enforcement, that's simply not the case. Chuck Todd introduced the idea and asked Walker if he'd build a northern wall. "Why are we always talking about the southern border and building a fence there, we don't talk about our northern border," said Chuck Todd. "If this is about securing the border from Mus-- securing the border from potentially terrorists coming over, do you want to build a wall north of the border too?"

In an electorate demanding a dismantling of the status quo, Scott Walker should be a natural favorite. There is no candidate in the Republican field who has delivered the institutional-level blow to the left-wing that Walker did by passing collective bargaining reform in Wisconsin. It wasn't an easy fight, and it would have been easy just to compromise to get the howling crowds to go away. It was what I called Wisconsin’s long, strange trip:
Police insurrections.  Palace guardsCatch a Senator contests.  Doctors behaving badly.  Massive national solidarity protests which weren’tIdentity theft as political theater.  Shark jumping.  Legislators who run away to other states.  Bus bang bangs.  Protesters locking their heads to metal railings and pretending to walk like EgyptiansBeer attacksCanoe flotillas.  (alleged) Judicial chokeholds.  Tears falling on Che Guevara t-shirts at midnight.  Endless recalls.  And recounts.  Communications Directors making threats.   Judges who think they are legislators (well, I’ll grant you that one is common).  V-K DayHole-y warriors.  Cities named Speculation and Conjecture.
But in a quiet way, he just kept on keeping on. And the result, including surviving a recall election, dealt a body-blow to Democrats unlike anything any other Republican presidential candidate can claim. Walker also had other, though less obvious, conservative reforms. And he did all this as the conservative movement in Wisconsin was under full-blown assault by the John Doe prosecutors, seeking to isolate Walker and bring him up on charges. After several years of investigation and ruined lives, they never got nothing on Walker.

We know from recent polling that Hillary Clinton is in trouble in New Hamspshire. Now she has problems in Iowa, according to a Des Moines Register poll released Saturday night:
Liberal revolutionary Bernie Sanders, riding an updraft of insurgent passion in Iowa, has closed to within 7 points of Hillary Clinton in the Democratic presidential race. She's the first choice of 37 percent of likely Democratic caucusgoers; he's the pick for 30 percent, according to a new Des Moines Register/Bloomberg Politics Iowa Poll. But Clinton has lost a third of her supporters since May, a trajectory that if sustained puts her at risk of losing again in Iowa, the initial crucible in the presidential nominating contest.... "This feels like 2008 all over again," said J. Ann Selzer, pollster for the Iowa Poll.
The trendline is horrible for Hillary:

Today Wisconsin Governor and presidential hopeful Scott Walker offered his comprehensive vision for what foreign policy, military policy, and diplomacy would look like under the Walker Administration. From the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
In his first foreign policy speech, presidential candidate and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker on Friday called for increasing military spending, securing the Mexican border, boosting surveillance programs and establishing a no-fly zone in Syria to help overthrow Bashar Assad's authoritarian regime. "As president, I will send the following message: The retreat is over," Walker told cadets at the Citadel military college in Charleston, S.C. "American leadership is back. American leadership is back and, together with our allies, we will not surrender another inch of ground to terrorists or any other power that threatens our safety. "America will not be intimidated. And neither will I." The GOP governor sought in his speech to put new substance and momentum behind his stalled campaign. Once soaring in Iowa and elsewhere, he has suffered in the polls in recent weeks as reality television star and real estate mogul Donald Trump's campaign has shot skyward.
His campaign may be stalled, but his apparent commitment to putting out a cohesive vision on foreign policy hasn't suffered. “We can no longer afford to be passive spectators while the world descends into chaos," stated Walker, in a speech that reflected on the troubled policies of the Obama administration, and labeled Islamic terrorists as "agents of pure evil."
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