Bruce Murphy
Back in the News

National Media Crucify Walker

Even the conservative press jump all over the charge that Gov. Walker was at center of a criminal conspiracy.

By - Jun 20th, 2014 10:24 am
Gov. Scott Walker

Gov. Scott Walker

Across the nation, the media has trumpeted the prosecutors’ accusation that Gov. Scott Walker was at the center of an effort that illegally coordinated fundraising with conservative groups in order to help his campaign and those of Republican state senators during recall elections in 2011 and 2012. Walker has denied the allegations as “partisan” and “categorically false,” but that hasn’t warded off countless negative headlines across the country.

“Prosecutors: Wis Gov. Scott Walker in criminal scheme,” was the headline in USA Today.  ABC News went with “Prosecutors: Wisconsin Governor in Criminal Scheme.” Countless publications ran similar headlines.

Nor was the treatment of Walker any better in the conservative press. The Fox News headline was “Prosecutors: Gov.Walker part of criminal scheme.” The story was all bad, quoting documents filed by lead prosecutor Francis Schmitz stating that “The scope of the criminal scheme under investigation is expansive,” and “includes criminal violations of multiple elections laws.” The headline and story were similar in the Rupert Murdoch-owned New York Post.

It was actually the more liberal publications who avoided the word “criminal” in their headlines. The New York Times preferred “Wisconsin Governor at Center of a Vast Fundraising Case” and the Washington Post went with “Wisconsin Gov.Scott Walker suspected of coordinating with outside groups.”

Nearly every publication made much of Walker’s email to Republican guru Karl Rove and to the fact that Walker was explaining how his campaign would coordinate with independent third party groups. Given that such coordination has long been illegal (though a recent court decision by federal judge Rudolph Randa suggested such laws could be unconstitutional) made it particularly newsworthy. “The fact that Walker alluded to the outside operation in an e-mail is ‘mind-boggling,’ said Richard L. Hasen, an election law expert who teaches law and political science at the University of California at Irvine,” in the Post story. Hasen added that “candidates usually go to lengths to build a wall between the operations of a campaign and outside allies.”

The headline in Time Magazine,  “‘Criminal Scheme’ Will Haunt Scott Walker,” shouted out the potential political problem for a governor who “now lies in the political equivalent of critical condition,” as the story noted. USA Today quoted Mordecai Lee, UW-Milwaukee professor of government affairs, to make a similar point, suggesting the allegations could hurt Walker’s relection efforts. “For that tiny fraction of the Wisconsin electorate that is authentically undecided, this is something that could throw the election one way or the other,” Lee predicted.

The Walker campaign is obviously aware that this will hurt him and has already reserved air time for TV ads that could run for 12 days, Politico reports. These ads may help Walker rebuild his reputation in Wisconsin, but nationally he has gained a black eye that may indelibly impact his widely discussed ambition to run for President in 2016.


4 thoughts on “Back in the News: National Media Crucify Walker”

  1. John O'Neill Sr. says:

    A well deserved pie in the face!

  2. Dean Deardurff says:

    It’s beyond me how a governor of a state can catch so much attention… Yet obuma draws none. For murder and conspiring with the enemy, lying, disregarding the constitution, broken oath, illegal trafficking of weapons, suppressing evidence, destroying evidence.. and many others …. Now for your mayor, is it nor enough that Milwaukee is among the top ten in worst cities in America? I guess is your trying for number one. Are liberals ………………. I spit in your face…

  3. Jeff Jordan says:

    Is it just me or is Walker turning into Richard Nixon with a better smile?

  4. David says:

    Walker has left a trail and breadcrumbs of corruption throughout his life. Maybe national media is finally catching on to the scope of dark money that haunts politics, and leaves the public with such decrepit and corrupted leadership. Although they seem to love and feed their coffers off that same money during the extensive election periods with all the crummy commercials that everyone fast forwards through.

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