Federal Politics

Published — January 10, 2012 Updated — May 19, 2014 at 12:19 pm ET

Six things you didn’t know about Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker

With recall looming, the controversial Republican is back in the spotlight

Introduction

Scott Walker has been a polarizing figure since becoming Wisconsin’s governor one year ago. Only months after moving into the Madison governors’ mansion, the 44-year-old Republican sought to fix the state’s budget gap by pushing a bill that cut pay and benefits for public sector workers and strictly curtailed their rights to collective bargaining.

Walker’s surprising move was controversial – and ultimately successful. National labor activists fought and lost while he became a Fox News regular.

But now, largely as a result of his brazenness, the first-term governor is facing a potential recall election. State Democrats and local union organizers have until Jan. 17 to gather the 540,208 signatures needed to force an early vote sometime this year.

Walker defended his actions and attempted to explain the flood of cash he’s received from outside the state since his standoff with organized labor in a three-part profile by the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism, the final installment of which was published Tuesday.

Out-of-state donors have given the embattled governor $3.2 million as of Dec. 10, the final campaign contributions disclosure deadline in 2011. That sum accounts for an unusually high 42 percent of his total war chest.

“Not a penny of that would be here if it weren’t for the recalls,” Walker said.

Here are six facts about Walker from the series for Wisconsin voters — and the rest of us — to consider:

  1. Walker is the first governor in Wisconsin history to face a recall attempt. If he loses a potential recall election, he would be only the third governor in U.S. history to be thrown out of the statehouse mid-term.
  2. PolitiFact Wisconsin has deemed 27 statements the governor has made about the state finances, the public sector protestors, and school staffing numbers “Mostly False,” “False” or, worse, “Pants on Fire.” The fact-checking group has reviewed 39 statements from Walker.
  3. In a taped phone call with a blogger posing to be conservative mega-donor David Koch in February, Scott Walker admitted that he had “thought about” planting troublemakers among the labor protestors in an effort to discredit the movement.
  4. As Milwaukee County executive in 2009, Walker sent layoff notices to public sector employees in an effort “to get their attention,” as he put it in an interview with a Madison radio host.
  5. As a sophomore at Wisconsin’s Marquette University, which Walker attended but did not graduate from, he ran for student body president. The future governor lost the election after he was sanctioned for illegal campaigning and called “unfit” by the student paper for his “blatant mudslinging.”
  6. Walker’s first experience in fundraising was for an Iowa flag. As an 8-year-old living in Plainfield, Iowa, he collected money in a mayonnaise jar to help buy a state flag to fly in front of the building where city meetings were held, according to his mother, Patricia Walker, a retired bookkeeper. His father was a Baptist minister.

For more on the controversial Republican, check out all three stories in the series and the full interview with Walker.

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SOUTH JERSEYTed SiroisMark SullivanTom LarkinAnonymous Recent comment authors
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Mark Sullivan
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Mark Sullivan

Trump needs to conduct these activities because the entire MSM media, excluding Fox, is campaigning against him 24/7/365.

Didn’t Monica’s boyfriend’s wife and various criminal enterprises outspend Trump by almost 2-1?

CapitalistRoader
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CapitalistRoader

Why wouldn’t he get an early start on fund raising? Hillary outspent him two-to-one in 2016. The Dem’s are the party of big money. The President knows this and is attempting to get a jump on it. Of course the Dem candidate will outspend him in 2020 so it’s only rational that he starts fund raising now.

George Young
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George Young

Oh brother. We just 8 years of the Campaigner – in – Chief. Where was this journalistic rectal thermometer then. Just another article about 2000 words too long that merely takes another slap at Trump for something he far from initiated.

j stevenson
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j stevenson

The big difference between Trump and all the rest is his refusing to accept funds from lobbyists, so they don’t have the White House access they are used to. These are the donors who buy the presidency and are as pixxed off that he won the election as are the media and the Dems. Lobbyists have never been shut out of the WH and Trump has told them he is not for sale.

jan v
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jan v

all the lobbyists are running all our government agencies and all the career civil servants who know how to run the country have been fired. YOU think this is a good thing ? what a crock…

thomas alessi
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thomas alessi

I am for Trump

Martin Shellabarger
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J. Stevenson, what are you drinking? Trump has more lobbyists in his administration than probably any other president. Trump is totally “for sale”, and the corporations know it. Grow a brain!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Trump needs to be impeached and tossed in prison. Then have the key thrown away so he will never be free. Then he can see how it feels not to have freedom.

Mark Sullivan
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Mark Sullivan

Thank you for the usual insightful leftist low IQ Snowflake response.

barney
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hes not imprisoning them hes sending them back to their country chill tf out

SOUTH JERSEY
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SOUTH JERSEY

WHY DONT YOU HAVE FREEDOM?

Tom Larkin
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Tom Larkin

First, something positive. I was happy to learn of empirical information in article. BUT, the article was so slanted against President Trump as to be deemed fake news (“Perhaps Trump just lied.” (Two different issues)). The article mentions that President Trump raised over $67 million, but ended 2018 with $19 million. President Trump spent over $40 million 2016 and 2017. President Trump conducted 57 political rallies. The article notes the hats and T-shirts sold, but NEVER MENTIONS THE INCREASE IN THE NUMBER OF REPUBLICAN SENATORS during a mid-term election that lost the House and the number of political rallies in… Read more »

Ted Sirois
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Ted Sirois

At least Trump is getting donations from willing donors. Fresh from his first election, Obama used billions of our children’s tax dollars to save thousands of union jobs in the car industry and bailed out the banks and many Wall Street businesses. This secured his source of reelection funds for his reelection four years later.

South Jersey
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South Jersey

TRUMP 2020; IS AN AMAZINGLY SMART MAN! VERY ORIGINAL & CREATIVE. I AM HAPPY TO HAVE HIS AS POTUS.

SOUTH JERSEY
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SOUTH JERSEY

THIS ARTICLE WAS OBVIOUSLY WRITTEN BY, A TRUMP-HATE-GROUP. THAT FEELS; IT IS NOT NORMAL TO BE SUCCESSFUL WITH YOUR OWN BRAND NAME. WHEN, IF FACT, IT IS NORMAL! >>>>> THIS IS >>> FAKE NEWS!!! <<<< ie: A PACK-OF-LIES; SPUN INTO; DEFAMATION OF CHARACTER. FOR A SINISTER-AGENDA OF; FASCIST DEMOCRATIC SOCIALIST, COUP D'ETAT

David
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David

Are you on some kind of drugs? Writing in caps makes me think that you are grumpy old fart or a uneducated hillbilly.