Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Walker's Speech Predictable: As Is His Ongoing Grab For Power

Nothing new. I suggested earlier today that he'd be low-key, but unyielding...

"...in a low-key, rehearsed and scripted delivery, Walker repeats his talking-point justifications, reiterates his refusal to negotiate - - now or ever - -  and says his 52-47 margin of victory in November was a 100% mandate to rule, not govern.

Those odds I'd put at 99 out of 100."
...and he was. (text here).

The speech won't move a single person to his side, or a percentage point in any poll.

It will harden the opposition, however, for these reasons:

First, his cheap shot at out-of-state protesters was an unnecessary, gratuitous throwback to the 60's, when right-wing Republican legislators couldn't imagine a nice Wisconsin kid being opposed to the War in Vietnam.

And what a dig at Wisconsin public employees, students and others who pay taxes and work hard in their communities, but abhor as state residents what he is doing to the Wisconsin Idea.

Secondly, his deliberate confusion of civil service with union collective bargaining continues, which I find fascinating as he is simultaneously taking positions in all departments out of civil service and converting them to at-will, appointee status.

Third, Walker loves the attention from conservatives as he rides his plan and the reaction to it.

As I said this morning:
"Scott Walker is addressing the state Tuesday night in what he's calling a "Fireside chat," but I'm guessing this is less a signal that he's mismanaged things or is performing damage control, and more an effort to showcase himself to a national audience and build his image as an ascendant conservative force."
The Journal Sentinel noted it Tuesday night, too:
"Tuesday night when he gave a fireside address at the state Capitol, Walker wasn't just talking to Wisconsin residents - he was talking to those around the nation who have been riveted by an unfolding drama."
Bottom line: Walker is all about his image and concentration of power in his office, which is what the attack on union rights is all about - - as is his plan to concentrate in his office key state rule-making now shared with the legislature.

In Wisconsin, those rules have the power of law.  It is a big deal.

No wonder the Club for Growth is out there clubbing for him.

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