Sean Scallon writing in theamericanconservative.com tells readers, “The Wisconsin governor’s success was built on the Bush GOP’s failures.”
Mr. Scallon explains how governor Walker has survived because he has correctly judged middle-class workers from a mostly middle-class state.
Walker made it a point to return half his salary as a full-time county executive back to general fund, but even in this he was out of step with Republican Party of the early 2000s. This was the era of George W. Bush, 9/11, and the Global War on Terror that sprung from it. It was also the era in which another Midwestern Republican governor, Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota, was demonstrating what an activist “big-government conservative” could do at the state level. But Walker didn’t embrace the ethos of Bush or Pawlenty, and by hewing to a limited-government ideology he positioned himself to take advantage of what was to come within the GOP and in the aftermath of the Bush years. Indeed, had the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan not turned out badly, had the bailouts of 2008 not taken place, and had the disappointment of conservatives towards the Bush administration not been so intense, Walker would still be a local political figure, if that.