August 18, 2013

"New 'Crystal Ball' frontrunner for GOP nomination: Scott Walker?"

Allahpundit says "it’s the first time I’ve seen a major elections analyst name Walker as the man to beat."
I agree with the basic outline: There’ll be a centrist champion, a right-wing champion, and then a compromise candidate who can draw from both camps. Sabato thinks that’s Christie, Rand Paul, and Walker, respectively. I think it’s likelier to be Christie, Cruz, and Rubio, with Rand Paul an X factor fueled by libertarians, but oh well.
Walker is the compromise and somebody else is right wing? That sounds so weird here in Madison.
Sabato lists one of Walker’s potential key disadvantages as being too bland a la Tim Pawlenty. Really? The guy who broke the unions in Wisconsin and then humiliated big labor by winning his recall fight? He won’t have a blandness problem. 
Could you watch the video of Walker in the recall debate and rethink why he wins around here (and by here I mean Wisconsin, not Madison)? I'm not sure people around the country really get the Midwestern style. If you know Walker for standing up to the noisy protesters, you may picture him out there fighting, but in fact, he stayed calm and mostly out of sight and waited for the protests to die down, which they eventually did. The GOP had the votes in the legislature, so they simply took action.
From my live-blog of the debate:
Walker says if he could do it all over again, he'd have explained what he was doing, and most people would have agreed. He fixed it [the budget], then talked about it.
It's easy to do something when you have the votes, harder to persuade everyone to accept it. He didn't try, and he admits he should have done better. You can say he was good at putting up with the outcry, but what choice did he have? Be silent or explain. He chose silence. He reminds me of George W. Bush who declined to defend himself when harshly criticized and trusted that in the long run people would understand. I can appreciate that and even find it admirable, but it might not work in a campaign.

When Scott Walker does campaign, he explains himself in a style that can be rejected as too bland. It's the opposite of flashy. It's earnest and Boy Scout.

Some people like that though. I do. I don't want my politician to be a rock star. Ironically, Walker's opponents called him a "rock star" and created the idea that he's a "rock star":


traditionalguy said...

Barrett made it clear that Walker having finished destroying public education in Wisconsin went on to become a "far right rock star." So I guess we are stuck with Scott Walker.

tim maguire said...

Your comments remind me a bit of Andy Rooney, who said what he wants in a leader is not a friend, but a mean old man who will be careful with his money.

I too admire Bush for not engaging his critics, instead relying on history to vindicate him, but the public debate should be engaged (at base, how different is that, really, from Obama's "screw the public, I'm doing what I want" attitude?) and defending Bush without Bush's help could be exhausting. I don't relish the thought of doing it again.

Steve Austin said...

Walker needs to overcome three things to win it all.

A) Turn the fact he didn't graduate from MU into a populist positive.

B) I am pro life but wish the WIS GOP didn't head into the abortion weeds this past session with that bill. Up until that point, Walker did a great job avoiding the divisive social issues. If he can focus solely on balancing the budget and reforming government that's his meal ticket. Many talk about doing it. Walker is the only politican in the US who actually took on the special interests and did it.

C) He needs to figure out what to do with that bald spot on his head. CNN or WaPo will figure out how to make sure they take photos of him with a boom camera in order to show him in the worst light.

John said...

So Rand Paul is "right wing"?!?!

Who knew.

Up to now I had thought of him as liberal (libertarian if you prefer) and had thought he identified as such. His politics certainly have been which has been much of his appeal.

If he were right wing or conservative I would support Joe Biden. (Suggested campaign slogan "Slow but sure")

John Henry

Hagar said...

I think I agree with Tim Maguire. What the country needs now is someone like old Joe Kennedy; a man that truly could read a balance sheet, knew how to cut costs, and truly enjoyed firing people - especially former friends and supporters.

Kirk Parker said...


On the contrary, one of the least admirable things about Bush was the way he seemed to conflate responding to personal criticism of himself (which is fine to stolidly ignore and be "above it all") and a decent defense--no, that word itself is to defense--a decent championing of his policies and the reasons behind them.

Michael K said...

"Walker having finished destroying public education in Wisconsin"

You mean all those teachers that got laid off ?

Oh, wait...

Bob Ellison said...

Steve Austin gives good advice. The GOP is often called "the stupid party". That's not because their policies are stupid, but because their PR is.

The Godfather said...

This past cycle Tim Pawlenty was my first choice for the GOP nomination, so you really shouldn't pay any attention to my opinion, but for what it's worth Walker seems to me like a better bet than Christie (loud but not conservative enough), Paul (irresponsible on defense and foreign policy), Rubio (tainted by his embrace of amnesty), and Cruz (not been around long enough). Plus, I really don't like legislators as presidents; in the modern world the skillsets are just too different.

I didn't know Walker had a bald spot. So did Gore when he ran for president, but you never saw it (I think he sprayed dye on his scalp). I suggest that Walker embrace his inner Eisenhower. Can Mrs. Walker say (per Mamie), "Before I go to sleep at night, I rub Scott's bald head"?

And by the way, I don't suggest that Old Joe Kennedy (who counseled preemptive surrender to Hitler) should be anyone's model of a candidate. Also, not Joe Biden (but the reasons for not Joe would make this comment much too long -- and if you need to be told, you're as slow as Joe).

gadfly said...

Note that this proposition considers three choices, a centrist, a conservative and a compromise candidate. Truth be known centrists are liberals who will not admit their bias. Furthermore, true liberals and true conservatives do not compromise.

As this Heritage Foundation video points out, America can remain a republic or become an oligarchy.

“We can keep our Republic as Franklin put it, or we will inevitably end up with an oligarchy, a tyranny of the elite.”

Angelo Cordvilla has written about our progress toward oligarchy in "America's Ruling Class - And The Perils of Revolution." The "ruling class" is now made up of all politicians in power, whether Democrat or Republican. Codevilla writes that the ruling class pushes for more government in order strengthen their power.

As Hertiage points out, more government means oligarchy - power to a few. So compromise will not right the ship but smaller government advocacy just might. So we can eliminate the donut man and the Cuban (even if he qualifies under the Constitution). Cruz and Jindal also have ancestry problems so I am left with Scott Walker and Sarah Palin.

grackle said...

Ironically, Walker's opponents called him a "rock star" and created the idea that he's a "rock star":

That was too obviously untrue, so it did not work. But the MSM is a bit more clever than his local Wisconsin media. Right away he'll be labeled a dummy because of his lack of a college degree. They'll keep throwing mud until something sticks. And of course he will be called "extreme" simply because he is a conservative.

I like him a lot. I was one of those out of state contributors his opponents spoke about. But the primaries are where to tell if he is a going to have national legs and be able to withstand the MSM hatchet job that would be sure to follow any announcement.

dwm said...

"Scott Walker and Sarah Palin"

i like it, but after the damage done to her by the insanity of the mccain campaign i wonder if she would even consider it.


politics could be fun again.

Mark Trade said...

Walker spoke at six of my Boy Scout troop's Eagle Courts of Honor, including my own, back when he was the state representative for our district. Every time, I thought he had a very earnest yet measured political style and figured, "this guy is probably going to be president someday."

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

I would be comfortable with a Badger named Scott running the country.

MayBee said...

Doesn't the promise of Obama's campaign rhetoric vs the actual Obama demonstrate our election system and our way of choosing President is desperately broken?

It's almost impossible to care who might be front runner, knowing the campaign will end up with a Republican monster via a world-changing "that face!" Democrat.

Harold House said...

the "Midwestern style" is what exactly? lying?