Wisconsin governor's race: Candidates 180 degrees apart - WFXS, MyFoxWausau - News and Weather for Wausau, WI

Wisconsin governor's race: Candidates 180 degrees apart

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WAUSAU (WAOW) -- The race for governor appears to be officially underway, although both candidates have been in campaign mode for months.

Gov. Scott Walker wants another term. His challenger, Mary Burke, says he doesn't deserve it.

In fact, listening to both candidates speak, you have to wonder if they even live in the same state.

We're turning things around in Wisconsin,” Gov. Walker proclaimed at a stop in Schofield Tuesday afternoon.

Under Governor Walker, we are falling behind,” said Burke Tuesday during an interview with Newsline 9 before visiting Domtar in Rothschild.

Indeed, our state's race for governor is shaping up to be a showdown of completely opposite views on how the state is—or isn't—moving forward.

During their stops, both candidates brought up the same issue over and over again—the economy.

As an executive with Trek bicycle, I have created jobs,” said Burke. “I know how it's done.”

Last year alone, we had the largest private sector job growth we've had since, well, the 1990s,” said Walker.

The governor also points to a lower unemployment rate and a budget surplus. He credits his work to curb collective bargaining and require public employees to pay more for retirement and health insurance.

Because of the success of our reform, the future looks bright,” said Walker.

To Burke, the future is bright as long as Walker isn't at the helm. She says the state is failing in job creation compared to the rest of the country.

There's no reason Wisconsin shouldn't be a thriving economy,” said Burke. “There's no reason we should be lagging other states as we are under Governor Walker.”

So now the official campaign begins with Democrats anxious to halt Walker's momentum, and Republicans hoping the governor's office will remain red for another four years.

Newsline 9 asked to speak with Gov. Walker following his campaign speech to ask specific questions, but his campaign spokesman denied our request.

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