Monday, December 23, 2013

Book It: PolitiFact Finds Another Walker Whopper

Continuing his documented pattern of false speaking, Gov.Walker has been found by PolitiFact to have included a false claim in his nationally-touted book "Unintimidated":

Walker says protesters in La Crosse blocked an exit and surrounded a State Patrol car carrying the governor and were "beating on the windows and rocking the vehicle." When the car was "extricated" from the crowd, a truck blocked a second exit.   
Yet we could find no mention of the car rocking incident before the book came out Nov. 19, 2013. 
Beyond the book itself and related public statements, there was no concrete evidence provided by Walker’s office, despite numerous inquiries by PolitiFact.   
Local police, journalists at the scene, and people from the company and the crowd do not recall seeing Walker’s car rocked or banged upon. And no one involved in news coverage, local law enforcement or witnesses reported seeing a truck blocking the car from leaving.
Finally, in a recent interview, Walker toned down his description of the incident.  
Based on the available information, we think the book’s depiction of what happened -- an organized effort to prevent Walker from leaving that placed him in direct danger -- is False.
Note also that PolitiFact cites follow-up work by La Crosse journalists who even used Googles satellite  imaging to disprove Walker's claim:
La Crosse Tribune editor Chris Hardie said reporter Chris Hubbuch and photographer Peter Thomson covered Walker’s visit and watched his car leave the plant. 
"Both Chris and Peter were standing outside when the governor left," Hardie said. 
"Neither of them remembers any kind of car rocking or the car being surrounded, that kind of thing." 
The journalists reviewed a Google satellite view of the property and refreshed their memories about where they were standing in relation to Walker’s car, Hardie said. 
"They would have noticed if they were blocking and beating on his car," Hardie said. He noted, too, that the journalists would have also been alerted if they had seen flashing police lights or heard a siren from Walker’s car -- something else the governor described. 
They witnessed nothing of the sort.
When will the national media begin to hold Walker accountable with tough questions and demands for honesty?

From PolitiFact, here is Walker's complete and desultory ratings record.

Republican from Wisconsin
Scott Walker, a Republican, was elected governor of Wisconsin in November 2010. He was recalled in 2012 after igniting controversy with a bill curtailing public-employee union collective-bargaining rights. He survived the recall election, defeating Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.  Walker is a former Milwaukee County executive and former member of the state Assembly.


Anonymous said...

I wouldn't put too much stock in Politifact. They could just as easily print a bunch of easily verifiable info as true. "The sky is blue-true" for example.

James Rowen said...

Plenty of people across the spectrum who read PolitiFact have their complaints. But take the finding for what it says and distribute it.

Anonymous said...

why should Walker let the facts get in the way of a sensational recounting of a story? Look for "Unsubstantiated" in the fiction section of your favorite bookstore.

enoughalready said...

In general, Politifact has a well-earned reputation (Pulitzer prize?) for solid reporting. I know I will believe Politifact over Walker any day of the week! But I can see why, if one supports Walker, one might want to try to dismiss Politifact as irrelevant.

Gareth said...

Even though police and local journalists saw no such incident, it may still have happened, with the lies coming from the grassy knoll and knocking reality back and to the right, back and to the right.

Jake formerly of the LP said...

That's all fine and dandy, but anyone with an IQ above 80 and the ability to Google could have figured that out in 5 minutes. Where the hell was our media calling this out when Walker's fiction book came out OVER A MONTH AGO.

Politi-crap is horrid, as it plays the false equivalence game worse than pretty much anyone, and stretches the truth as much as it can to keep from giving Walker "False" ratings. Imagine if they used a modicum of judgment and included all the false impressions Walker and WisGOP try.

By the way, will we hear the hosts on AM620, AM1130, and AM1310apologize for trying to milk this lie?