Mar 5, 2015

National Press Hits Another Scott Walker Myth

Nate Cohn demolishes another Scott Walker myth: That winning gubernatorial elections in Wisconsin means Scott Walker has broad appeal for a presidential general election, bringing electability to a GOP presidential ticket.

"[Walker's] electoral record — three wins in governor’s races in four years in Wisconsin, including a recall election — isn’t as impressive as it looks," writes Cohn in the NYT in his column, The Upshot. "Mr. Walker’s electoral performance was average for a Republican running for governor in 2010 or 2014. His showing — a modest victory in a modestly Democratic state — was highly consistent with the extent that Republican candidates for governor outperformed Mr. Romney’s showing from 2012."

Cohn points out off-year turn-out adequately explains Walker's statewide success, and notes, "One could even argue that Mr. Walker’s performance was the least impressive of any Republican candidates for governor in the Midwest."

These facts are not lost on Wisconsin.

Nor is the fact that Walker garners his electoral success from the racially segregated counties, the WOW counties, outside Milwaukee and in rural Wisconsin where younger generations don't stay around that long as Walker continues to demolish community institutions that took generations for Wisconsin to build.

So, Walker continues his ambush on Wisconsin through his ludicrous 2015-2017 budget proposal that seems as much as a tool to bash political and ideological foes, as a thoughtful document to solve the deficit Scott Walker created.

Scott Walker is working to accumulate as much power as he can in his politicized Department of Administration.

Office of State Employment Relations

Walker's budget, for example, eliminates the "Office of State Employment Relations (OSER)" and transfers "the funding, positions, and functions of OSER to a new Division of Personnel Management in DOA which is attached administratively to the Department of Administration (DOA)." (Legislative Fiscal Bureau, p. 330)

The OSER is already sending risk notices to employees that they might be canned by Walker.

Wisconsin Division of Hearings and Appeals

And, administrative law judges in the Wisconsin Division of Hearings and Appeals (DHA) which hears complaints from Wisconsin citizens about many state agencies, such as the DNR would be moved to Walker's Department of Administration.

"According to the Budget in Brief, the Governor recommends that DOA conduct all administrative hearings for state agencies, with the exception of the Public Service Commission and unemployment insurance." (Legislative Fiscal Bureau, p.41)

This proposal can be understood as payback against Administrative Law Judge Jeffrey D. Boldt who hit the DNR for not considering "the accumulated effects of groundwater use when the agency reviewed an application for a high-capacity well for a $35 million dairy farm," a decision unpopular with Walker campaign contributors. (Bergquist, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel)

Less citizen recourse against a more corrupt state government. Walker would never run on this, and does not enjoy a broad mandate for most of his agenda.

Any suggestion that Walker has cross-over appeal and electability as political assets is absurd.

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