Scott Walker Hopes To Nab GOP Nod For Governor
One year from now Wisconsin will swear-in a governor.
It could be Democrat Jim Doyle for a second term, but two Republicans are hoping it won’t be.
News 3’s Colin Benedict sat down with one GOP hopeful, Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker.
Walker isn’t well known in the Madison-area, yet.
A glance at his Website shows his background.
He grew up in Delevan, Wisconsin and attended Marquette University, but didn’t graduate.
Instead, he dropped out to take a job with the American Red Cross, got married and started a family.
“I knew some day I’d be called back to public service, and in my case it came sooner than I thought, when I was just 25 (years-old),” said Walker. “After a number of years in the private sector I was elected to the State Assembly. I’ve had a taste for it ever since.”
He shot to prominence in the wake of a pension scandal.
He gave up his Assembly seat to run for the Democratically-dominated Milwaukee County Executive position, and won.
He won by promising to be frugal and restoring ethics, a blueprint he’s following again.
“As Governor, right off the bat, that first day in office, I would call a special session to pass a true property tax freeze on all four years I’m in office,” said Walker. “On all levels of government.”
Walker admits Gov.Doyle’s plan has helped some people but calls it a phony freeze because on average tax bills went up.
He criticizes Doyle saying the governor essentially borrowed the money to pay for it instead of cutting programs.
Walker’s plan would cut.
“If you’re ever going to control taxes, the only way you can do it is if you control spending,” said Walker.
“I’d look at attrition. I’d look at how wisely we spend dollars even in schools. Do we spend money in the classroom or do we spend it on administration or hierarchy and benefits that are out of touch with the rest of society.”
Walker is critical of the Governor over recent fundraising investigations.
Prosecutors are looking at a possible connection between campaign cash and state contracts. No charges have been filed.
“He makes Chuck Chvala look like a picker when it comes to campaign cash shakedowns,” said Walker. “That to me has got to be changed. We have to restore integrity and trust into the system.”
“You served in the legislature. Has money just become too big of an influence in how legislation gets through,” asked News 3’s Benedict.
“Certainly there’s a big problem to begin with and an even bigger problem with perception,” said Walker.
Walker pledges to stop fundraising while the budget is being considered and won’t accept cash from those bidding for state contracts while they’re pending.
But more than anything Walker is running on faith, not his religious faith. He just wants voters to trust him.
“I’ve shown that I can do what I say I’m going to do,” said Walker. “That’s why so many Democrats, in the past, have voted for me. I told people what I was going to do and then I went out and did it.”
“Are you implying that Gov. Doyle hasn’t done that,” asked Benedict.
“Absolutely not,” said Walker.
Walker said Doyle has broken campaign promises but not fully funding shared revenue or two-thirds of school aides.