Scott Walker gets a Democratic challenger
October 7th, 2013
04:21 PM ET
6 months ago

Scott Walker gets a Democratic challenger

Updated 10/7/2013 at 4:54pm

(CNN) – Former bicycle executive Mary Burke announced her campaign Monday for Wisconsin governor, looking to unseat Republican Gov. Scott Walker.

The daughter of the founder of the popular Trek bicycle company, Burke's message is one of economic development, contrasting Walker's economic leadership which she says has left Wisconsin 45th in projected job growth.

"I'm running for governor because we can do better than that, a lot better," Burke says in a video announcing her campaign.

Burke, to date, is the only Democrat to launch a challenge to Walker, who last year survived a recall election launched after pushing for and signing into law legislation stripping most public unions in the state of their collective bargaining rights.

Up for reelection in 2014, Walker is also thought to be a possible contender for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination.

Burke served as Wisconsin Commerce Secretary from 2005 to 2007. Burke highlights that experience in her web video, promoting herself as a job creator compared to the politics she argues are ruining the state.

"We've got to make some real changes in Madison." Burke said.

"Just like Washington, our state capitol has become so focused on politics and winning the next political fight, it's pulling our state apart and our economy down."

The Republican Governors Association was dismissive of Burke's campaign.

"Wisconsin Democrats have settled on millionaire Mary Burke as their sacrificial lamb in the 2014 governor's race," Executive Director Phil Cox said in a statement that blasted Burke's record as Commerce Secretary.

"Burke's candidacy is sure to rely on the tax-and-spend model of governing that plagued Wisconsin for years before Governor Scott Walker stepped in to clean up the mess that Burke helped create."

The Democratic Governors Association in turn touted Burke's career while slamming the incumbent.

"Governor Walker has failed to deliver on his central promise of 250,000 new jobs because he's been distracted by a divisive ideological agenda," Association chair Peter Shumlin, Gov. of Vermont, said in the statement.

"Instead of working to come through on his word, he attacked the rights of workers and women, and rewarded the wealthiest and well-connected at the expense of the middle class and investments in education."


Filed under: Scott Walker • Wisconsin
soundoff (34 Responses)
  1. Joyce

    Republikan Party a thing of the past not enough old white men to win elections any more

    October 7, 2013 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  2. karen18407

    What is truly ironic is that Bohener refuses to stop the shutdown for fear of his job – while folks worry about their jobs and payless pay day. WOW

    October 7, 2013 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  3. Lisa P.

    tom l

    LOL. You guys on the left talking about their "job creation" when their unemployment is at 6.7% which is far better than the national average. Hilarious.
    October 7, 2013 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm
    ----------------------------------

    We were at 5.8% under Doyle - 2 percentage points below the national average even after the recession hit. Walker has driven a lot of good teachers out of state and done precious little to fulfill his promise of 250,000 new jobs. The only "new job" my unemployed neighbor, a medical device engineer, has found is in Pennsylvania. Doyle and Thompson knew how to push emerging industries; Walker only knows how to reward the troglodytes, his major donors. He doesn't even have an agricultural policy, DNR is all about handing our bribes to political front groups, and his tourism board apparently exists to put out repulsive commercials that make Wisconsin look like the State of Stupid. Which I guess we must be for having elected this clown as Governor twice - I guess he knows his voters there. LOL is right.

    October 7, 2013 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  4. cbp

    Nothing like stereotyping someone. Thought we had gotten away from labeling people. One thing is for sure there are plenty of words to use to label the Governor. You can be fiscally responsible without being a member of the TEA Party or any other group which wants to hold government hostage. Just watching him at the REpublican Convention gave me a really good picture of the man. He does not match up to other governors of Wisconsin.

    October 7, 2013 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  5. steven A.

    i wonder how many commenting live in Wisconsin and deal with what we deal with ?

    October 7, 2013 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  6. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Where do I send my donations to her campaign?

    October 7, 2013 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  7. Rusty Krus

    @Allow me to translate
    Daddy founded the company, did all the work and gave little Mary a cushy 6-7 figure job pretending to work.
    Just we all know how this works.

    And the problem is? Did any of the Bush offspring have to create a niche for themselves? No. They all ran on their Daddy's record and they all did a great job screwing up every golden opportunity handed them.

    October 7, 2013 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  8. vinster76

    without money, how qualified would she, or 99.9% of all politicians be to lead others, or make intelligent decisions for others.........???????? Perhaps it is because she is a fairly attractive blonde, and in the age of superficiality, botox, facelifts, tummy tucks, and Miley Cyrus, what counts is not brains or leadership, but who looks better on cable?

    October 7, 2013 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  9. S. B. Stein

    I would hope that people in WI wake up to the fact that Walker is an ideologue that doesn't think fully about the situation. The public unions aren't the problem.

    October 7, 2013 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
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