Gov. Scott Walker Says Re-Election Is Focus, Not White House

Nov 22, 2013 2:57pm

Wrapping up a media blitz to promote his new book, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker insists his eyes are trained on his reelection campaign and helping GOP candidates retake the majority in the U.S. Senate next fall, not the 2016 presidential election.

“I’m not focused on the national. I’m focused on being governor and I’ve worked pretty hard the last two and a half years to be governor not once but twice,” Walker, who in June 2012 became the first state governor to survive a recall attempt, said. “I’m going to have to do it again next year and naturally that’s where my focus is.”

Walker, a Republican, told reporters at a breakfast hosted by the Christian Science Monitor Friday morning that his focus as governor continues to be on “economic and fiscal issues,” not social issues, which he said generally do not carry as much weight in the eyes of voters.

“I’m pro-life like most Republican governors are pro-life,” Walker said. “I don’t apologize for that but I don’t focus on it. I don’t obsess with it.”

Walker has said that the next U.S. president should be a Washington outsider, such as a current or former governor. But, he says former GOP vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan, a fellow Republican from Wisconsin, “is one of the exceptions to the rule” because he has “unique skills and characteristics.”

“It’s hard not to be impressed with [Ryan's] tenacity towards reform, his looking at issues beyond the traditional congressman point of view, but with a much larger, what I would call an ‘executive sense,’” Walker said.

As for President Obama, Walker said “one of his biggest frustrations” as an American is the Obama administration’s approach to foreign policy.

“You have a president who has spent far too much time listening to his political team and not his policy team, and speaking out on things, pushing things that may not have full set of a reality in terms of policy implications but politically might sound very nice at the time. And I think that is dangerous territory whether you’re a Republican or Democrat,” Walker said. “When you say something, it has to mean something to your allies. And even more importantly it has to mean something that’s stronger to your adversaries.”

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