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UW Election Eye 2012

Campaign 2012 through the eyes of UW faculty and students

May 14, 2012 at 6:30 AM

Monday Eye Openers: Walker wanted to “divide and conquer”; MoveOn.org protests Romney

Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI) and Tom Barrett (D) will go toe to toe in upcoming recall election on June 5, 2012 (Photo courtesy of http://www.scottwalker.org/ and www.barrettforwisconsin.com/).

Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI) and Tom Barrett (D) will go toe to toe in upcoming recall election on June 5, 2012 (Photo courtesy of http://www.scottwalker.org/ and www.barrettforwisconsin.com/).

Walker Caught on Tape
Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI) is against Tom Barrett (D) — Milwaukee Mayor who handily won the Democratic primary last week — for his June 5 recall election. The recall has received heavy national attention and national funds — approximately 2/3 of Walker’s $25 million have come from outside of Wisconsin. UW Election Eye has reported on the election before and will be in Wisconsin leading up to the election.

Recently discovered video footage of Walker has him stating a “divide and conquer” strategy against unions. In the video, Walker is speaking with billionaire Diane Hendricks in January 2011, right before he proposed a bill that curtailed unions’ collective bargaining rights. Hendricks asked: “Any chance we’ll get to be a completely red state, and work on these unions, and become a right-to-work — what can we do to help you?” Walker replied, “Well, we’re going to start in a couple weeks with our budget adjustment bill. The first step is, we’re going to deal with collective bargaining for all public employee unions, because you use divide and conquer.”

Walker has said repeatedly that he is not trying to make Wisconsin a right-to-work state, however, some have noted that his response to Hendricks suggests the beginning stages of a plan toward that end. When asked about the video, Walker has replied in Alberto Gonzales fashion, commenting, “I don’t remember the particulars of that discussion.”

Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney (Photo courtesy of mittromney.com).

Protesting at its Highest?
Mitt Romney gave the commencement speech at Liberty University’s graduation over the weekend. Liberty, a private evangelical Christian university in Virginia, was founded by fundamentalist Baptist preacher Jerry Falwell in 1971.

Romney spoke about the “shared moral convictions” that can bond people of differing religious faith together, and then broached the topic of same-sex marriage: “As fundamental as these principles are, they may become topics of democratic debate. So it is today with the enduring institution of marriage. Marriage is a relationship between one man and one woman.” Romney, undoubtedly, made this statement part of his speech because of Obama’s statement earlier in the week in support of same-sex marriage.

Protestors at the commencement were focusing on a different topic. MoveOn.org –a “progressive public policy advocacy group” — has taken credit for flying over the event with the banner: “GOP = HIGHER SCHOOL DEBT.” The group says Romney wants to cut $170 billion from the Pell Grant program.

Obama is Golden
Endorsements come and go — see Rick Perry for example — and some matter more than others. But an endorsement from Golden Girl Betty White sure can’t hurt. Rose, I mean, Betty has endorsed Obama saying that she likes what he has done and “how he represents us.”

Celebrity endorsements are not given a lot of weight, but White’s career, which stretches amazingly back to the 1930s and is still very active today, definitely spans almost any and all generation gaps.

Comments | More in National | Topics: Barack Obama, Betty White, Divide and conquer

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