Walker on a hard road

Scott Walker is adored by many on the right.  His ability to take on Wisconsin’s unions and win has endeared him to many conservatives and his mid-western roots make him appealing as a GOP nominee.  There is one hurdle for him to clear before the governor can do anything regarding 2016.  He has to get reelected. 

That is looking like it will be tougher than people originally thought.  According to one poll, Walker trails Democrat Mary Burke 48-44. 

There is still 2 months of campaigning to go, so things are far from over.  However, for Walker to be under 50% and trailing in any poll is not a good sign.  

Looking ahead any upcoming debates will be critical for Walker.  A win in one of them could put this challenger a way.  You can also beat that the Koch brothers and the unions will both be spending big to win this one.  


Guess They Don’t Stand with Rand on this One

A poll from the Washington Post-ABC News shows 63% of conservative Republicans and 61% of all Republicans back Obama’s airstrikes in Iraq.

First, Obama has actually done something conservatives support.  That don’t happen every day.  Second, this is a sign that reports of the death of the neocons are greatly exaggerated.  Now, they will not call themselves neocons or Bush Republicans but those are exactly the kind of policies Republicans are supporting when they are willing to back even Obama on Iraq.  Imagine if it was President Walker or Christie who ordered the strikes, support would be in the 80’s.

Third, this is a big problem from Rand Paul.  It is impossible for Paul to escape this non-interventionist foreign policy roots.  Hell, it’s probably what drives half of his support in the GOP.  The thing is that going into a primary where your first goal is to build support among the GOP base it’s a little harder when you and them have a big disagreement on a big issue.  Also, it probably won’t help that your opponents will be CONSTANTLY reminding the voters of that difference.  

It’s not all bad Rand.  The staff of Reason Magazine loves you more than ever.  That’s good for 20-25 votes. 

Way to Waste a Few Hundred Words

This article about the GOP race makes a few nice points but is pretty incompetent.   First, the author writes about Rick Perry as though he is a major player.  Captain Oops is not.  I don’t care how many hipster glasses he wears, Rick Perry is getting nowhere near the GOP nomination.  Second, he ignore major candidates like Ted Cruz, Paul Ryan and Scott Walker.   Don’t kid yourself all of them are running and have compelling narratives.

Third, the title focuses on how the GOP base may finally win the nomination but doesn’t actually tell you how that is going to happen.   Maybe because you can’t say at this point.  If you don’t know the primary calendar is hard to map out a victory.  Also, has delegate allotment been decided?  Or a debate schedule agreed too?  No.  Again these are all things that could have an impact on the race.

I know it’s summer, and Matt Welch has cornered the market on how wonderful Rand Paul is right now, but could we please have something interesting from the so-called professional reporters out there.

One Year From Now

In 12 months we will be in the thick of the GOP 2016 primary race.  By this point we will probably have had our first debate and will have some kind of big event going on in Iowa.  Lord willing it will be the Straw Poll.  Also, all of the candidates will have announced and at least one will be in the middle of a scandal about their past.

Good times await.

Walker Takes Out the Trash

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker fired a staffer who made comments about Latinos on twitter.  This was the smart thing for him to do. Just get it over with.  No reason for something like that to linger around, the way it did with say Rand Paul and his staffer who called himself the Southern Avenger. 

This is not the first time Walker has had to do this with staffers who made comments about Latinos on social media.  Could it be a trend?  If you’re Walker you better hope it is not. 

Keystone Polling

Public Policy Polling has given us some Pennsylvania numbers.  Here is how the Republican race shapes up right now:

  • Christie at 26%
  • Ted Cruz on 16%
  • Rand Paul at 14%
  • Jeb Bush on 10%
  • Rick Santorum at 8%
  • Marco Rubio with 6%
  • Paul Ryan on 5%
  • Bobby Jindal and Scott Walker at 3%

It is no surprise that Christie is in the lead.  He’s from a neighboring state and is just coming off some great coverage for a big reelection win.  However he is losing self-identified ‘very conservative’ voters, pulling in 11% compared to 23% for Cruz and Paul’s 19%.  Where Christie gets his lead, according to the poll, is from moderates where he swamps Paul and Cruz 45 to 10 and 5 respectively.

This also shows that Cruz can have pull with Republicans across the country.  Given that Cruz has been in the Senate for about 15 minutes the fact that he is out polling much more established figures like Jeb Bush and Paul Ryan shows that his message, and how he delivers it, has some real resonance with Republican voters.

For Rick Santorum these numbers are a reminder of how far he has fallen.  Remember Santorum represented the state in the U.S. Senate for 12 years and can only pull in 8% among Pennsylvania Republicans.

It will be interesting to see where Pennsylvania goes in the process.  If it is an early state that would certainly help Christie and give him a chance to bounce back if he hits any bumps in the road in say South Carolina.

Scott Walker Plays the Culture War

Speaking to the AP Scott Walker said:

“I just have a Midwestern filter, that’s the difference. I’m willing to speak out, but I’m not going to call you an idiot.”

Gee, who is that a shot at? What GOP star is known for being in people’s faces and being a little brash?  Oh, I don’t know, maybe Chris Christie.

Walker is clearly trying to remind Republicans in the Midwest and South that in terms of style and culture Chris Christie is not one of them.  Christie’s style may play well in the in-your-face-Northeast but not in other parts of the country, parts that Christie needs to be the nominee in 2016.

How Christie responds to this will tell a great deal about how well he does in the race.  The worst thing he could try to do is convince people in the South or Midwest he is one of them.  That kind of phoniness never works and Christie should avoid it.  Of course, it didn’t stop Mitt Romney from proclaiming his love of grits.