Gov. Scott Walker

Scott Walker Epically Fails At Math And History In One Single Tweet (IMAGE)

ADDICTING INFO

This week, potential 2016 presidential contender and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker demonstrated how little knowledge he had of history and basic mathematical skills – all at once. Observing the arrival of the first settlers to Jamestown in 1607, this gem of a tweet was released from Walker’s account:

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There’s just one little (or glaring) problem: the settlers really arrived 408 years ago – not 505, as the tweet states. Walker’s “team” eventually realized they were 97 years ahead of themselves, and sent out a correction 50 minutes later. Walker basically threw his so-called team under the bus for the error.

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The president of Jamestown Rediscovery Foundation, James Horn, responded to the tweet with humor:

“It’s always gratifying to hear our politicians referencing the early history of our country and, in this case, the founding of Jamestown. I am sure that on reflection Governor Walker will recall that Jamestown was founded in 1607 which is 408 years ago.”

Eric Walker, the western regional press secretary for the Democratic Party, also thought the erroneous tweet was comical and posted this, eluding to the fact that Walker had never earned a college degree.

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The mathematical flub is hilarious, but the tweet attracted criticism for another, more serious reason. Walker was called out for being a hypocrite, since the tweet was commemorating the nation’s first immigrants. Recently, the Wisconsin governor has been developing a track record for opposing undocumented immigrants gaining citizenship in the United States. Just two months ago, Walker stated that he didn’t “believe in amnesty.” In April, it appeared that he wanted to limit legal immigration when he said:

“In terms of legal immigration, how we need to approach that going forward is saying, we will make adjustments. The next president and the next Congress need to make decisions about a legal immigration system that’s based on, first and foremost, on protecting American workers and American wages, because the more I’ve talked to folks — I’ve talked to Senator Sessions and others out there, but it is a fundamentally lost issue by many in elected positions today —is what is this doing for American workers looking for jobs, what is this doing to wages, and we need to have that be at the forefront of our discussion going forward.”

It seems that Walker’s Twitter feed has nothing to do with facts, or anything he actually believes in.

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Obama Tells Scott Walker To ‘Bone Up On Foreign Policy’ (VIDEO)

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You Tube/NPR

 TPM LiveWire

“I am confident that any president who gets elected will be knowledgeable enough about foreign policy, and knowledgeable enough about the traditions and precedents of presidential power, that they won’t start calling into question the capacity of the executive branch of the United States to enter into agreements with other countries,” Obama responded. “And it would be a foolish approach to take, and, you know, perhaps Mr. Walker, after he’s taken some time to bone up on foreign policy, will feel the same way.”

Walker responded to Obama’s comments on Twitter and in a Tuesday morning statement.

“President Obama’s failed leadership has put him at odds with many across the country, including members of his own party, and key allies around the world,” Walker said in the statement. “Americans would be better served by a president who spent more time working with governors and members of Congress rather than attacking them. Whether it is cutting a bad deal with Iran, calling ISIS the JV squad, or touting Yemen as a success story, Obama’s lack of leadership has hurt America’s safety and standing in the world.”

Watch Obama’s interview below via NPR. He is asked about Walker’s comments at the 18 minute mark.

Scott Walker’s plan for Wisconsin education: Slash it to the bone

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker talks with other governors before the arrival of U.S. President Barack Obama to address the National Governors Association at the White House in Washington February 23, 2015. .REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI) | (Reuters)

Daily Kos

As Gov. Scott Walker ramps up his 2016 presidential campaign, he’s using Wisconsin to show what he’d like to do to the entire United States of America. Right now, his budget—the one that would cut $300 million from universities while including $220 million in bonds for a professional basketball arena—is being debated, and Alice Ollstein takes a look at its effects on education:

Funding at UW-Rock County would be stripped back to levels not seen since 1998, and the school’s dean has said faculty layoffs are almost certain. The situation appears even more dire at UW-Eau Claire, where administrators have offered buyouts to a record 325 faculty and staff members — about a quarter of the campus’ employees. These so-called “go away packages” have been offered to nearly half of the school’s political science department. UW-Stevens Point reports they willeliminate several entire majors, even for studentscurrently enrolled in them.And it’s not just higher education feeling the pain.

Public primary schools across Wisconsin will lose about $127 million in education aid next year, largely by scrapping a special $150 per-student fund that Wisconsin school districts received over the past two years.

The struggling Milwaukee public schools are set to lose more than $12 million.

Prediction: After cutting $12 million from the Milwaukee public schools, Walker will grandstand about how the schools are failing the children, using that to push privatization.

This is looming widespread disaster. In higher education, we’re talking about a significant number of jobs, including both faculty and staff. Students will be affected, too, and not just by bigger classes and less advising and support: If you eliminate entire majors, the students currently in those majors are going to have to scramble to graduate. It may take some longer to put together the courses needed for a new major, meaning they’ll accumulate more student loans. If the students had career plans based on a specific major, they’ll be graduating and looking for jobs at a disadvantage. In K-12 schools, already hit hard by Walker’s 2011 budget, another round of cuts could mean fewer guidance counselors, less art and music education, bigger classes, scantier classroom supplies—generally a barebones, second-class education.

Which Scott Walker would like to export to the rest of us starting in 2017. At least where Republican governors and state legislatures haven’t already beat him to it.

Gov. Scott Won’t Fight Ruling On Voter Rolls Purge

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AP Photo / Juan Salas

TPM LiveWire

Scott announced on Thursday that he wouldn’t appeal the decision, giving a big victory to the League of Women Voters and a number of other advocacy groups who said that Scott’s administration tried to disenfranchise minority voters who were likely to vote for President Barack Obama.

“Our goal continues to be 100 percent participation by eligible voters and zero percent fraud,” Walker said in a statement, according to The Tampa Bay Times. “Florida voters deserve an election system they can be proud of.”

As TPM reported in April, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, in a ruling of 2-1, found that Florida’s move to purge voter rolls of non-citizens violated the National Voter Registration Act’s “90 Days Provision.” That provision says that states must finish “any program the purpose of which is to systematically remove the names of ineligible voters from the official lists” within 90 days before a primary or general election at the federal level.

Scott’s administration, in response, said that it would announce its decision on what to do next in 2015.

Scott Walker Declines To Say Whether He Thinks Obama ‘Loves America’ (VIDEO)

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CNBC Screenshot

TPM LiveWire

CNBC’s Becky Quick asked Walker on Thursday morning to respond to a report that former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani (R) dissed the President at a private dinner, which the governor also attended.

“I do not believe, and I know this is a horrible thing to say, but I do not believe that the president loves America,” Giuliani said, as quoted by Politico. “He doesn’t love you. And he doesn’t love me. He wasn’t brought up the way you were brought up and I was brought up through love of this country.”

“The mayor can speak for himself,” Walker said on “Squawk Box.” “I’m not going to comment on what the President thinks or not. He can speak for himself as well.”

“I’ll tell you, I love America,” he continued. “There are plenty of people, Democrat, Republican, independent, and in between who love this country. I think we should talk about ways we love this country and that we feel passionately about America.”

Co-host Andrew Ross Sorkin wasn’t going to let Walker evade the question.

“But did you agree with those comments? Were you offended? What was your reaction when you heard them?” he pressed.

“I’m in New York. I’m used to people saying things that are aggressive out there,” the governor responded.

Co-host Joe Kernen then turned back to Sorkin, sparing Walker the pressure of the hot seat. Kernen asked Sorkin whether he thought America was exceptional, then chided him for answering that he’d “like to think America is exceptional” instead of simply stating “yes I think America is exceptional.”

“That might be one of the reasons certain people might think — you know, that may play into that perception,” Kernen said before throwing his hands up. “I’m not going to touch this hot potato either.”

Watch below:

Why it’s important to ask Scott Walker about evolution

America Blog

Yesterday, Slate’s Jamelle Bouie wrote that Scott Walker’s recent refusal to say if he accepts the science behind evolution isn’t anything to get worked up over.

As he argued, evolution has very little bearing on public policy, save perhaps for the state-level issue of the science curriculum itself. After all, knowing how an individual feels about evolution doesn’t necessarily tell you where they’ll come down on other issues lying at the intersection of science and politics.

Especially if that person happens to be in a Democratic demographic: As Bouie points out, citing a recent Pew survey, 42 percent of African-Americans are creationists, but 56 percent say that humans are causing climate change. 73 percent of young people accept evolution, but only 39 percent think it’s safe to eat genetically modified food. And, as we’ve all learned recently, the same liberals who reject vaccine science overwhelmingly accept evolutionary science.

So why does it matter what a given presidential candidate thinks about evolution? If we want answers on the scientific issues of the day, shouldn’t we ask about them directly?

Sure, if all you care about is specific policy positions then ask about those policy positions. But, as Bouie himself points out, that isn’t why anyone’s asking: Journalists bring up evolution around Scott Walker because Republican primary voters want to hear him say that it’s bunk. In other words, evolutions has become a wedge issue, an ideological proxy for establishing appropriate liberal or conservative bona fides. Just another battle line in the culture wars.

While positions on evolution may not perfectly correlate with positions on climate change, genetically modified foods or vaccines in particular, that only matters if you only consider important issues those that have direct, tangible effects on the public policy flavors of the week.

But I’m not listening for Scott Walker’s answer on evolution to derive his position on vaccines. Bouie’s right in saying that if we really cared about that, we could ask Walker directly. Instead, long after vaccines have left the news cycle, we should still care about whether candidates understand, or at least don’t actively push back against, evolutionary science because it serves as a proxy issue for all of the non-partisan attributes we want in a president.

None of the issues that fall under the umbrella of “science” should be partisan issues at all. Analytical thinking may correlate with liberal ideology, but that doesn’t mean that facts themselves are biased. A presidential candidate’s position on evolution is as important as their position on vaccines because both speak to that person’s respect for and ability to understand evidence. So evolution doesn’t need to serve as a proxy for the current scientific issues of the day; on the policy side alone, it serves as a proxy for the next issues of the day.

But it goes beyond that, since Bouie closes his article by dismissing evolution as yet another battle line in the culture wars — almost as if culture doesn’t matter. To this point, I think Bill Nye provides a fitting response:

Like it or not, those messy culture wars matter, especially when science is dragged into them. The President of the United States doesn’t just weigh in on policy, they are a major player in our national culture. Every time the president rejects or even waffles on basic scientific principles, our country becomes slightly less intellectually curious. And as I’m sure we’ll hear candidate Walker say, along with every presidential candidate for the next century and beyond, our country’s hopes rest on our ability to think, innovate and create. Any candidate who talks about technology and innovation while undermining the basic science behind that technology and innovation simply doesn’t know what they’re talking about, and the voters should know how clueless they are.

Furthermore, facts and evidence shouldn’t be wedge issues, and for thoroughly smart, on-point journalists like Jamelle Bouie to dismiss them as such is a problem that our entire political culture needs to deal with. Just because a certain percentage of our citizens choose to reject overwhelming scientific evidence doesn’t mean that such a rejection needs to be met with respect. As John Oliver put it, “You don’t need people’s opinions on a fact.”

So no, I don’t care what Scott Walker thinks about evolution because I’m just curious about his position on vaccines. I care about what Scott Walker thinks about evolution because I care about what Scott Walker thinks about evolution. Candidates who cannot accept scientific consensus on a given issue deserve to be called out accordingly. They don’t deserve a free pass just because that consensus isn’t up for a vote in 2016.

Scott Walker: Denying Health Care To Low-Income People Helps Them ‘Live The American Dream’

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker | CREDIT: AP PHOTO

 Think Progress

Defending his fellow Republican governors’ decision to block Medicaid expansion in their states, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) on Friday suggested that denying health coverage to additional low-income Americans helps more people “live the American Dream” because they won’t be “dependent on the American government.”

Walker has recently leveled some criticism at other GOP leaders for accepting Obamacare’s optional Medicaid expansion, saying they shouldn’t necessarily trust the government to come through with the federal funds to cover the policy. During an appearance on MSNBC’s Morning Joe on Friday, Walker was asked whether his position stemmed from an “ideological criticism,” and if he believes the handful of Republican governors implementing this provision of the health law are not “genuine conservatives.”

The governor didn’t explicitly answer that question, pointing out that every state has different needs. But he did offer a broader criticism of the public health program.

“Beyond that, I just ask the basic question: Why is more people on Medicaid a good thing?” he said. “I’d rather find a way, particularly for able-bodied adults without children, I’d like to find a way to get them into the workforce. I think ideologically, that’s a better approach, not just as a conservative, but as an American. Have more people live the American dream if they’re not dependent on the American government.”

In reality, however, the majority of people who stand to benefit from the Medicaid expansion are already in the workforce. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, which has been closely tracking the policy effect of states’ decisions on this Obamacare provision, most of the people in this coverage gap are part of a demographic group known as the “working poor.” Two thirds of them are part of a family where someone is working, and more than half of them are working themselves — often in sectors like the agricultural and service industries, which have a history of failing to provide insurance benefits to their workers.

Last fall, the New York Times analyzed the data about the coverage gap and confirmed that the Americans being denied Medicaid are cashiers, cooks, nurses’ aides, waiters and waitresses, and janitors. Most of them are people of color, and many are single mothers. They don’t fit the conservative trope of the lazy individual who is overly dependent on the government programs — and, as the New York Times reported at the time, they are actually “the very kinds of people that the [Medicaid] program was intended to help.”

Nonetheless, 20 states have refused to move forward with the expansion. According to Kaiser’s latest estimates, about four million low-income people across the country currently fall into the coverage gap. If every state accepted the Medicaid expansion, the national uninsurance rate would be two percentage points lower.

Although Walker has maintained his resistance to Obamacare’s traditional Medicaid expansion, there isn’t a coverage gap in his state. Even before the passage of the health reform law, Wisconsin had a generous Medicaid program that allowed people with incomes up to 200 percent of the federal poverty line to qualify. But the threshold varies for each state, and low-income people living in other places aren’t so lucky. In Louisiana and Texas, for instance, a family of three with an annual income over $5,000 makes too much money to receive any Medicaid assistance.

Walker Wants To Drug Test Food Stamp Recipients

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TPM LiveWire

In an interview with the Wisconsin Journal-Sentinel, Walker said he realized that establishing a drug test requirement would not be in line with the federal government’s stance.

“We believe that there will potentially be a fight with the federal government and in court,” he said. “Our goal here is not to make it harder to get government assistance; it’s to make it easier to get a job.”

Though Walker pitched it as job creation policy, his opponent’s campaign said the proposal is just about the 2014 election.

According to the Huffington Post, requiring drug tests for welfare recipients is popular nationally.

Florida passed a law that required welfare recipients to be drug tested in 2011, but it was struck down by a federal judge last year.

Georgia also recently passed a welfare drug testing law, but in July Gov. Nathan Deal (R) delayed implementation of the law while Florida waits for a federal appeals judge’s ruling on its drug testing law.

Breaking News! Prosecutors: Scott Walker at the Center of a “Criminal Scheme” (Update)

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker | Spencer Platt – Getty Images

Anyone surprised at this outcome?  I’m not…

Daily Kos

OMG!
200 pages of documents have been unsealed by a Federal Judge in one of the 4 legal efforts to shut down John Doe II – a secret investigation looking at whether or not there was illegal coordination between RW dark money groups and recall campaigns in Wisconsin.  They say Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker (R-YourOnYourOwniStan) was at the center of it.

In the documents, prosecutors lay out what they call a “criminal scheme” to bypass state election laws by Walker, his campaign and two top deputies — R.J. Johnson (an advisor to both Walkers Campaign and Wisconsin Club for Growth) and Deborah Jordahl.

(information bolded is mine and information in italics is my addition)The documents allege that Walker and his associates raised money and controlled spending by conservative groups during the 2012 recall elections.  In Wisconsin, there can’t be coordination between campaigns and outside spending groups.

In an email to Karl Rove, Scott Walker said:

“Bottom-line: R.J. helps keep in place a team that is wildly successful in Wisconsin. We are running 9 recall elections and it will be like 9 congressional markets in every market in the state (and Twin Cities),” Walker wrote to Rove on May 4, 2011.

OMG! Side order of Karl Rove to go along with this, too.  Pinch me, I might be dreaming.

This case is currently being reviewed by the 7th Circuit Court after Federal Judge Rudolf Randa (a member of the Federalist Society whose wife donated often to Walkers campaign and whose Judicial Assistant is the wife of Scott Walkers lawyer) ordered the investigation shut down and evidence collected by the investigators destroyed (the 7th Circuit immediately intervened to prevent the destruction).

It is a judge reviewing the case that unsealed the documents today.

Seeing this, it’s small wonder they’ve been running to every court imaginable and writing editorials for RW newspapers to get this thing shut down.

This story is just breaking so stay tuned for further developments.

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Here’s a link to the raw documents.  (Warning:  large pdf file)

So far, nobody is commenting on this, but I’ll bet Walkers hair is on fire trying to think of something to say.

UPDATE:  Link to the John Doe II prosecutors appeal of the case.  (Warning:  pdf file)

They delineate the coordination and conference calls.

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For those interested in how Walker gets to pull the wool over the eyes of so many voters in Wisconsin, The New Republic has an excellent article.  I can’t recommend it more highly.

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Politico has an article up.  This is becoming national news.

And MSNBC posted an article as well.

Scott Walker Falls Apart When Asked About Incriminating Emails On Fox News

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Scott Walker (R-WI)

So, near the end of the 10 minute video, Scott Walker refuses to answer Chris Wallace’s questions about the private emails scandals tainting his administration.  It’s an interesting exchange…

PoliticusUSA

Another Republican hope for 2016 crashed and burned today as Republican Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker got agitated and defensive while refusing answer questions about incriminating emails on Fox News Sunday.

Video:

Transcript:

WALLACE: Thousands of emails were released this week that indicate that you knew that public workers were working on county time in political campaigns, which is against the law.

WALKER: That’s absolutely not true, and if you look at the facts out there. This is old news. This is about a case that was closed last March. A Democratic district attorney in Milwaukee County spent multiple years looking at all this information. The 27,000+ pages of documents that were just released this week. Looked by a team led by a Democrat in Milwaukee County, and last year in March, he announced the end of that case. Plain and simple. It’s old news.What we have political operatives at the DNC and the DGA. They desperately want to switch the subject…

WALLACE: In one email that was released this week, your then chief of staff Thomas Nardelli, let’s put this up on the screen, writes campaign and county workers that you wanted to hold daily conference calls, “to review events of the day or of a previous or future day so we can better coordinate sound timely responses,” and in another e-mail county administrative director Cynthia Archer suggests that colleagues should use a private e-mail account. “I use this private account quite a bit to communicate with SKW,” that’s you, “and Nardelli, the former chief of staff.”

Question: if county workers were doing nothing wrong, why should they be using a private e-mail account?

WALKER: Well, but that’s exactly to my point. you had a Democratic district attorney spend almost three years looking at every single one of those communications, interviewing people, talking to people and closed the case.

WALLACE: Did you have your own private e-mail account?

WALKER: It’s one of those where I point out district attorney has reviewed every single one of these issues.

WALLACE: But sir, you’re not answering my question.

WALKER: No, because I’m not going to get into 27,000 different pieces of information.

Earlier in the interview, Walker was rolling along, lying about his jobs record in Wisconsin. He was selling himself to Republicans as a potential 2016 nominee. Host Chris Wallace was playing his usual Fox News role. He asked a question that was open ended enough for Walker to explain the emails. The trouble started when Gov. Walker decided not to answer Wallace’s question about personal knowledge of illegal activities.

Scott Walker is guilty. He can hide behind the fact that he hasn’t been charged with a crime yet, but he knew that what his county workers were doing was illegal. He urged the usage of a private email system because he knew he was breaking the law.

A smart 2016 candidate would have offered some sort of pseudo apology for the whole scandal, and moved on.

Gov. Scott Walker has demonstrated time and again that he is not smart.

Walker got defensive, bunkered down, and added fuel to the scandal fire. Some in the conservative chattering class have been touting Scott Walker as an inside favorite to win the 2016 Republican nomination, but judging from his answers on Fox News, Walker could never be elected president.

An electable candidate would not have reacted the Walker did in this interview. They would have had a prepared answer that would have satisfied Chris Wallace’s low threshold for truth.

Walker became obviously agitated when he was pushed on the emails, and the country got to see that, just like Chris Christie, the myth of Scott Walker has been destroyed.

If Scott Walker can’t handle a little needling from Chris Wallace, he definitely can’t handle the scrutiny of a presidential campaign.

Back to the drawing board Republicans. Another one of your 2016 saviors has self destructed.

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