Gov. Walker opens up to Newsline 9 about new book - WFXS, MyFoxWausau - News and Weather for Wausau, WI

Gov. Walker opens up to Newsline 9 about new book


Gov. Scott Walker hasn't done much to discourage the notion he may run for president in 2016.

But now, in an interview with Newsline 9, it's clear he doesn't want to talk about it.

"I really don't look at '16," said Walker. "I focus on '14."

Walker has spent a week promoting his new book, Unintimidated: A Governor's Story and a Nation's Challenge.

"This is not a book about me, it's not about a future campaign," said Walker. "It's really about Wisconsin."

But is Walker ruling out taking that message into the presidential race in the future?

"I had to work pretty hard now twice in the last three years to become governor. I'm going to focus again on that next year," said Walker.

In the book, Gov. Walker spends a lot of time talking about the Act 10 saga, specifically about a time he took a prank call from a man claiming to be billionaire David Koch. It was really a blogger named Ian Murphy.

"What we were thinking about the crowds was, was planting some troublemakers," said Murphy.

"You know, well, the only problem with the, cause we thought about that, my only fear would be is if there was a ruckus caused," Walker said in the call.

But Walker's book tells a slightly different story.

"The fact is we never—never--considered putting 'troublemakers' in the crowd to discredit the protesters," Walker writes in the book.

How does he explain the discrepancy between what he told the caller and what he says now?

"Well, he—just so it's clear, I didn't say that. He said, have you thought about it. I said, we thought about it. It was a general statement," said Walker.

"You agree with him that you had thought about it," countered Newsline 9's Daniel Woodruff.

"Well, we implied that, yeah. But I went back and looked at it in my research for this book, I looked at my notes, I looked at the notes that others who were part of our discussions point out. We had never seriously considered that," said Walker.

In the book, Walker says that prank call opened his eyes.

"It helped me redirect my time and my attention in making sure I wasn't doing things to somehow benefit myself," he said.

But Democrats are critical of Walker and his book.

"Scott Walker is someone who is an opportunist and someone who is always looking out for his next job," said Melissa Baldauff, Wisconsin Democratic Party communications director.

As Walker gears up for his re-election campaign next year, Democrats promise a fight, especially on jobs.

"Scott Walker very clearly promised 250,000 jobs," said Baldauff. "He's not even going to get halfway there."

"No matter what that number is at that day—and I'm still focused on 250,000 by 2015—I think voters need to put it in that context and say, do we want to continue down the path that is gaining jobs, or do we want to go back to the policies that saw us lose jobs?" said Walker.

Gov. Walker's publisher tells Newsline 9 he doesn't have any more big travel plans to promote his book, just "a few private events here and there."

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