Walker 3.0: A Little Spike In That Vanilla

Two days after Jennifer Rubin told us Scott Walker probably will wait for a decade or two to run for president, Politico‘s James Hohmann has the lowdown on the Wisconsin governor’s very specific 2016 plans, much of them gleaned from Walker himself. Seems he’s going to staff up and take some high-profile right-wing positions before launching or folding next summer. It all sounds amazingly calculated, even for a cyborg-like pol:

“We went from, when I was county executive, Walker 1.0, to governor, Walker 2.0,” the governor said. “If this was even ever realistic, we’d have to build a 3.0 right off the bat. You want to keep widening the circle.”

Well, someone in Walker’s circle–perhaps social scientists working from a special Koch Brothers laboratory/dungeon in Wichita or something–have concluded Walker 3.0 needs a little spike in that vanilla persona with respect to “the base” that would determine his fate in places like Iowa. So:

The 47-year-old Republican intends to use an upcoming legislative session in Wisconsin to push an ambitious agenda that could, in combination with his triumphs over Big Labor, bolster his standing with Republican primary voters: Repealing unpopular Common Core standards, requiring drug tests for welfare beneficiaries and cutting property taxes.

Check-a-box, check-a-box, check-a-box. Sounds to me like a sudden, distant sound of indictments rolling off a prosecutor’s printer might be the only obstacle to the remorseless progress of Walker 3.0 towards its failsafe point.

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.