|45th Governor of Wisconsin|
From: January 3, 2011 - Present
|Successor||Incumbent (no successor)|
|5th Milwaukee County Executive|
From: April 30, 2002 – December 27, 2010
|Predecessor||Janine Geske (acting)|
|Successor||Lee Holloway (acting)|
|Member of the Wisconsin State Assembly from the 14th district|
From: June 1, 1993 — April 30, 2002
- Scott Walker was Conservative of the Year 2014
Scott Kevin Walker (born November 2, 1967) is the current conservative Republican governor of Wisconsin and was a candidate in the 2016 presidential election. Previously he was executive of Milwaukee County and a member of the Wisconsin State Assembly, and while in college he ran a student pro-life organization.
Despite being in a blue state, Walker, with the help of the GOP-controlled legislature, successfully passed a large amount of solidly conservative legislation, including expanding gun rights, protecting the right to life, and making Wisconsin more business-friendly, among other accomplishments and despite the strong opposition of leftists. Wisconsin's economic position has strengthened due to his policies.
Walker was born on November 2, 1967 in Colorado Springs, Colorado. His father was a Baptist minister, and the Walker family moved to Plainfield, Iowa and then to the small town of Delavan, Wisconsin when Walker was nine. Walker was active in school sports and other activities as a kid, and he was an Eagle Scout. In 1985, he was one of two boys chosen to represent Wisconsin for the Boys Nation, an event in Washington D.C. sponsored by the American Legion. At the event, Walker was able to meet United States President Ronald Reagan, "who he said inspired him and became his role model", and he has stated that the even gave "him the political bug." Walker graduated from Delavan-Darien High School in 1986.
The same year he graduated high school, Walker entered Marquette University, and he would be a student there until the spring of 1990. Walker was very active in student government, and he unsuccessfully ran for student president in 1988. Walker earned good grades, had a clean record, and was only 34 credits away from graduating, however he voluntarily dropped out after he received a well-paying job at American Red Cross. Liberals tried to mock him because of this in 2015, but Marquette made clear that he was "a senior in good standing when he voluntarily withdrew".
Early political career
In 1990, Walker unsuccessfully ran for the Wisconsin State Assembly. In 1993, he was successfully elected to the state assembly in a special election. He was re-elected four times, serving until 2002. As early as his first election campaign and his tenure as state representative, it was clear that Walker was a solid fiscal and social conservative.
In 2002, the Democrat Milwaukee County Executive, Tom Ament, decided to retire rather than face a recall election due to a pension scandal. Walker won the election in a historic victory, becoming "the youngest person and first Republican [ever] elected to the position" in a liberal county. As Milwaukee County Executive, Walker again showed his strong conservative values by shrinking the government workforce by 20 percent, by cutting over $44 million in proposed spending through his veto powers, and returning $370,000 of his government salary back to the county, among many other decisions. Walker was re-elected to the position in 2004 and 2008, and despite being in a liberal county, he ran as a conservative.
Governor of Wisconsin
Walker ran for and was elected Governor of Wisconsin, defeating Democrat Tom Barrett. As with his previous campaigns, Walker ran on a strong conservative platform, including support for gun-rights, life, marriage between a man and a woman, among other issues. Walker's victory came amid a massive series of GOP victories, as the party also took the contested U.S. Senate seat and majorities in the U.S. House delegation, State House, and State Senate.
Stand against the unions and 2012 recall election
Scott Walker became a leader of conservatives nationwide when he supported and then signed into law a repeal of most of the collective bargaining privileges of most government workers. Walker took this historic step to prevent the State from continuing on a path of financial ruin and overspending.
Union-controlled leftist politicians went berserk at the commonsense bill to reduce union control over the state, and they blocked the bill for three weeks by fleeing to Illinois until the Senate removed "some financial elements from the bill", making it legal to pass it without the missing Democrats. Leftists continued to fight the bill, but it was ultimately declared to be legal, twice, by the Wisconsin Supreme Court.
Walker faced a liberal-promoted recall election on June 5, 2012, but won it by a landslide—53 percent of the vote, even more than in 2010. By late May, liberals were already beginning to blame each other for Walker's lead in the polls: "Top union officials are lashing out at Washington Democrats, claiming they haven't done enough to help them unseat Gov. Scott Walker in Wisconsin's recall election."
When Scott Walker took office, Wisconsin had a budget deficit of $3.6 billion. Instead of raising taxes, the governor has set out on a mission to reduce costs across the board, make Wisconsin a business-friendly state, and give local governments the ability to make their own spending decisions. The state's labor unions were in an uproar and protested Walker's decision to end union collective bargaining and weaken the tight grip they had on the state and its people.
Due to Walker's reforms, Wisconsin taxpayers have saved over $5.24 billion as of 2016, or $2,291 per household. In addition, the state has saved over $3.36 billion and has increased its revenue by $404.8 million. Despite leftist claims that Wisconsin's economy has stagnated under Walker, the evidence is overwhelming that the opposite is the case.
Walker has been a strong advocate for the unborn. In 2011, he signed the Wisconsin state budget into law, which defunded Planned Parenthood, making Wisconsin the fourth state to defund the illegal program. In addition, Walker has signed other pro-life bills into law, including one to ban abortion after the 20th week of pregnancy.
On March 9, 2015, Walker signed into law a bill making Wisconsin a right to work state. Once again, the unions went wild in opposition due to the loss of their massive power and filed a lawsuit against the law. As of May 2016, the law is still in effect but in a vulnerable position.
Walker also has greatly expanded gun rights for Wisconsin residents. In 2011, he signed concealed carry and the Castle Doctrine into law. Walker's support for gun rights did not end there. On June 24, 2015, Walker signed two bills into law that removed Wisconsin's 48-hour waiting period for buying guns and gave retired or off-duty law enforcement officials the legal right to carry concealed guns into public schools. He has earned an "A+" rating from the National Rifle Association.
2016 presidential campaign
Walker announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination in the 2016 presidential election on July 13, 2015. Despite his popularity, strong position, and early lead in the polls, Walker dropped out on September 21 after the rise of Donald Trump. He endorsed Texas Senator Ted Cruz for the GOP nomination, but he put his full support behind Trump after he won the primary. Walker helped conservative Indiana governor Mike Pence prepare for the vice presidential debate against Virginia Senator Tim Kaine, which Pence decisively won.
Walker married his wife, Tonette, in 1993, and together they have two sons. Walker is a born-again Christian. Despite his strong Christian and conservative stances, Walker's family disagrees with him on both political and religious issues.
- Stein, Kate (July 19, 2015). Timeline: The life and career of Scott Walker. Wisconsin State Journal. Retrieved October 20, 2016.
- Puzder, Andy (May 3, 2015). A Closer Look at Scott Walker’s Record on Jobs. The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Scott Walker. Biography.com. Retrieved October 20, 2016.
- Barbour, Clay (October 24, 2010). From preacher’s kid to front-runner: Scott Walker’s small-town roots led to reputation as fiscal hawk. Wisconsin State Journal. Retrieved October 20, 2016.
- Viser, Matt (February 11, 2015). Scott Walker’s political ambitions fostered at Marquette. The Boston Globe. Retrieved October 20, 2016.
- Wisconsin: GOP wins Senate, House, gov. seats, ousting Feingold. USA Today (from AP). Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Stein, Jason & Johnson, Annysa (November 3, 2010). Republicans take over state Senate, Assembly. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Lieb, David & Ramde, Dinesh (March 1, 2011). Wis. Gov. to Outline Ultimate Intentions in Budget. ABC News (from AP, archived at archive.org). Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Marley, Patrick & Lee Bergquist, Lee (March 9, 2011). With Democrats absent, Republicans advance collective bargaining changes. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Marley, Patrick & Lee Bergquist, Lee (June 14, 2011). Supreme Court reinstates collective bargaining law. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Wisconsin's Walker survives recall by wide margin. Fox News. June 6, 2012. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Joseph, Cameron & Bogardus, Kevin (May 25, 2012). Unions angry with Democrats over lack of help in Wisconsin governor's recall. The Hill. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Higgins, Sean (November 5 2014). Gov. Scott Walker wins re-election in Wisconsin. Washington Examiner. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Rocha, Polo (November 6, 2014). How Scott Walker won his third governor’s race in four years. The Badger Herald. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Szafir, CJ (April 22, 2016). Walker’s Union Reforms Have Helped, Not Hurt, Wisconsinites. National Review. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Zagorski, Sarah (August 24, 2015). Scott Walker Pushes Bill to De-Fund Planned Parenthood After It Sells Aborted Baby Parts. LifeNews.com. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Scott Walker outlines abortion, gay marriage positions in letter. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (from AP). October 22, 2014. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Stein, Jason (July 20, 2015). Scott Walker signs 20-week abortion ban, trooper pay raise. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Gov. Walker signs bill making Wisconsin right-to-work state. Fox News (from AP). March 9, 2015. Retrieved October 21, 2015.
- Court puts ruling striking down Wisconsin's right-to-work law on hold. Chicago Tribune. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Stein, Jason (July 8, 2011). Walker signs concealed-carry measure into law. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Stein, Jason (December 7, 2011). Walker signs 'castle doctrine' bill, other measures. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Strauss, Daniel (June 24, 2015). Scott Walker signs two pro-gun bills. Politico. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- NRA Endorses Scott Walker for Governor in Wisconsin. NRA-PVF. September 22, 2014. Retrieved October 22, 2016.
- Walker announces 2016 White House bid, vows to 'fight for America'. Fox News. July 13, 2016. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Lowry, Rich & Johnson, Eliana (September 8, 2015). Scott Walker: What Went Wrong?. National Review. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Eric Bradner, John King, Dana Bash and Jeff Zeleny (September 21, 2015). Scott Walker drops out of 2016 presidential race. CNN. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Glueck, Katie & Gass, Nick (March 29, 2016). Scott Walker endorses Ted Cruz. Politico. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Gass, Nick (July 20, 2016). Walker 'absolutely' endorses Trump. Politico. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Gilbert, Craig (July 21, 2016). Scott Walker joins backlash over Cruz refusal to endorse Trump. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Shih, Adrienne (October 5, 2016). Gov. Scott Walker: Mike Pence didn't 'take the bait' at debate. CNN. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Jordan, Mary (July 5, 2015). Scott Walker’s wife, toughened by life, is ready for fires of a campaign. The Washington Post. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Erickson, Doug (January 3, 2011). Inauguration day starts with prayer breakfast. Wisconsin State Journal. Retrieved October 21, 2016.