Monday, July 13, 2015

WISCONSIN GOVERNOR SCOTT WALKER-REPUBLICAN JOINS PRESIDENTIAL RACE





Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is running for president.

In a video shared by his campaign on Monday, Walker touted his experience as a conservative governor in a blue state against his GOP rivals in Washington, D.C.

“America needs new, fresh leadership with big, bold ideas from outside of Washington to actually get things done,” Walker says in the 89-second spot. “In Wisconsin, we didn’t nibble around the edges. We enacted big, bold reforms that took power out of the hands of the big government special interests and gave it to the hard-working taxpayers — and people’s lives are better because of it.”

Walker officially launches his campaign during a speech in Waukesha, Wisconsin, later Monday, becoming the 15th entrant into the Republican field.

“We fought and won. In the Republican field, there are some who are good fighters, but they haven’t won those battles. And there are others who’ve won elections, but haven’t consistently taken on the big fights. We showed you can do both. Now, I am running for president to fight and win for the American people. Without sacrificing our principles, we won three elections in four years in a blue state. We did it by leading. Now, we need to do the same thing for America,” Walker says in the video.

Walker’s tweet follows a strange turn of events on Friday, when the Wisconsin governor’s account mistakenly tweeted his announcement a few days early. Twitter said the errant tweet was not Walker’s fault.

Walker is currently polling second to former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush in the latest Real Clear Politics polling average, garnering 10.5 percent to Bush’s 16.3 percent — though he is leading the GOP field in Iowa, a state that is critical to his presidential hopes.

Following Monday’s announcement in Waukesha, Walker will embark on a tour of early primary states, heading to Nevada on Tuesday, South Carolina on Wednesday and New Hampshire on Thursday. He will then travel through Iowa in a Winnebago, starting Friday in Davenport.

The governor is considered the frontrunner in the Hawkeye State, leading Bush 18 percent to 12 percent, according to the latest survey conducted by We Ask America. More than 80 percent of Republican insiders in Iowa told POLITICO last week that Walker would win the caucuses if they were held now.

As of last week, Walker was said to have raised nearly $30 million for his presidential bid, putting him behind Bush, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio in the Republican primary money race.

“It’s time,” Walker wrote in an email to supporters on Monday. “It’s time to take the successes we have created in Wisconsin and apply them to Washington … It’s time to remove control from the big government special interests and give it back to hard-working taxpayers … It’s time to restore the values that made our nation great.”

Walker’s strategy places a heavy emphasis on Midwestern states — and his campaign team reflects that focus. His expected campaign manager, Rick Wiley, once served as the executive director of the Wisconsin Republican Party, and two of the top staffers on his super PAC, Keith Gilkes and Stephan Thompson, are veterans of the state’s political battles. 

The campaign’s likely political director, Matt Mason, was once a top official for the Michigan Republican Party.

Walker has also made it a point to get his family’s disagreement about same-sex marriage out in the open. His sons, Matt and Alex, support same-sex marriage, in contrast to their dad, who called the Supreme Court’s decision legalizing it a “grave mistake.”

He has called for a constitutional amendment that would protect the rights of individual states to legalize or ban same-sex marriage as they see fit. “That was a hard one,” Walker’s wife, Tonette, told The Washington Post. “Our sons were disappointed … I was torn,” she said.

“Matt and I aren’t necessarily changing his stances on any issues,” Alex Walker told CNN on Sunday. “We respect his opinion on things.”
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