Scott Walker Peaking Too Early?

Scott Walker’s “surprise” win of the Kansas Straw Poll may be a shock to the establishment, but its zero surprise to me. Walker’s win has generated a flurry of articles on Walker as well as an appearance on This Week. But as far back as a year ago, I predicted Walker would probably be the best all around choice for the 2016 Republican primary process. He’s a governor of a purple/blue State who rose to national prominence battling the budget, pension reform, and unions.  He is attractive to both establishment types for a solid record of actually winning, and grass roots types for the ability to take on and wrestle to the ground left leaning special interests; something that’s not seen much these days.Scott Walker

Walker’s national prominence came about with his fight with Wisconsin public sector unions.  I wrote about the skirmish back in 2011 and thought at the time that Walker’s victory could have spelled the beginning of the end for public sector unions.  Alas, so far that victory has remained just Walker’s.   But the enmity he earned from both local and national Democrats and the left in general lead to a recall election, which Walker won handily.

By Republican standards, Walker is a stand out success story.  He battled the left and rather than backing down under a barrage of negative press, which Republicans traditionally do, Walker stuck to his guns and won a pretty substantial victory. Compare that to Jeb Bush, who’s sat out the various political battles since the 1990’s and now expects to ride in on a golden, donor financed chariot to be crowned the nominee based on the divine right of Bushes.

The Republicans do have a deep bench, at least compared to the Democrats.  In fact the Democrat’s bench consists of one person, Hillary Clinton.  If she gets sick, the Dems are in trouble for 2016. But the Republican’s bench consists of establishment types that are anathema to the base of the party, like Jeb Bush, and social conservative types that are anathema to the establishment like Mike Huckabee. The converged area on the Venn diagram of candidates that both the base and establishment can live with is almost as limited as the Democrats presidential bench.

Walker’s major problem with the base is his immigration position.  Walker has tried to be cagey and hold every position on the issue at once.  He has both supported a path to citizenship and made vague comments about fixing the system.”  However the fixing doesn’t seem to include border security or a wall.  In other words, he’s a pro amnesty open borders type, which should please the establishment wing.  Although I would love to make amnesty a disqualifier, the fact is there are no, I mean zero commonly mentioned Republican potential 2016 candidates that oppose amnesty.

In any case if Walker does enter the race, he’ll have to quit being cagy about immigration and speak directly to the issue.

But immigration isn’t even his biggest problem yet.  When I made my prediction on Walker last year, it was based on the idea that the talking heads and establishment media wouldn’t pay any attention to Walker until at least the Iowa Caucuses. But the results of the Kansas straw poll show that plenty of other Republicans were thinking along the same lines as I was.  The media has rediscovered Walker this week and they will remember in short order that they despise him. Walker is like Sarah Palin and Allen West combined, with a little Tom DeLay sprinkled on top. It’s too bad he couldn’t have flown under the radar a while longer, but if there is one Republican who knows how to fight back, it’s Scott Walker.

 

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5 thoughts on “Scott Walker Peaking Too Early?

  1. Its hard to tell what the media is up to here. Without a doubt they’re going to despise an evangelical politician who doesn’t have a pedigreed education.They’ll surely try to Sarah Palinize him as an uneducated dumb cluck.Maybe by making him “surge” early they have extra time to eviscerate him. Or maybe this is a weaselly maneuver to promote him if they feel he’d be an easy loss against Clinton. However I still maintain HRC is somehow in poor health and/ or suffered more damage from her stroke than has been let on. Before I was chained to the stove I was studying linguistics, in particular how brain damage impacts language. It’s obvious to me she has some degree of aphasia post-stroke which could explain her sparse public appearances since she left her position as SoS. She also often has the “steroid look” of facial swelling but maybe that’s from too much botox?

    • I’ve had my own suspicions about Hillary’s health. Is she in good enough health to fly around the world giving he occasional speech? Sure. Good enough health to wage a 24/7 campaign for two years and then hit the ground running in the Presidency? Highly Unlikely. So I do think the Dems should get themselves a back up.

      On the media, I think they were genuinely caught by surprise by Walker’s win. They had already decided that Jeb was going to be the nominee because…dynasty and money. But with the party split between establishment and Tea Party, there are not many options that can straddle both sides. Walker can do that. So now that the have Walker in their gunsights I’m sure we’ll here all kinds of hit pieces against him in the near future.

  2. I think one advantage Walker has is that he’s survived the onslaught of the Democrats’ national smear machine. They spent a fortune trying to beat him in Wisconsin and failed. I’m hoping that means that there are no serious (significant) skeletons in his closet. Of course, there’s still plenty of time for him to pull a Todd Akin, but I’m banking on him being too smart for that.

    As for Toomanyspiders’ prediction that they’ll try to portray Walker as uneducated, I think she’s right. But the Dems pull that tactic out of their playbook on a regular basis. It’s one of their articles of faith that the people on the left are always smarter than the rubes on the right. I’ve always found that laughable, considering how few Mensa candidates I’ve met during my years working in urban neighborhoods (the strongest of Democrat strongholds). I think a viable counter to that is to point out that our last four presidents have been Ivy League alumni and ask, “How’s that been working out for us so far?” In fact, our last non-Ivy grad POTUS was Ronald Reagan, a man who prevailed in two national elections with the press solidly against him.

    • I agree with you that our parade of Ivy League alums as President has left me underwhelmed, but I don’t doubt that the fact that Walker hasn’t finished College with be a Democratic attack point. Hopefully one that could backfire since there are millions of people who don’t have college degrees but are otherwise successful and don’t feel the need to kowtow to an Ivy Leaguer. In fact, that could work to the Republican’s advantage if they try to set an agenda that helps the working and middle class. Of course the Republicans never miss an opportunity to throw away an advantage.

  3. Pingback: Scott Walker Peaking Too Early? | That Mr. G Guy's Blog

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