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Presidential campaign speech: Scott Walker promises to fight federal unions

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EUREKA, Illinois — Scott Walker promises to tackle union power at the federal level just like he did as governor in Wisconsin. He said in a presidential campaign speech Thursday, September 10th that he wants to "wreak havoc" on Washington.

Scott Walker

Scott Walker

Walker effectively ended collective bargaining for most state workers. The governor spoke Thursday at Eureka College in Illinois, the alma mater of President Ronald Reagan.

"We've got a plan to wreak havoc on Washington and our plan starts on Day One. We need a new leader. We need someone from outside of Washington -- someone who's actually gotten things done. We need a leader who is going to wreak havoc on Washington and once and for all put the people of this great country back in charge of your government," Walker said.

"Scott Walker is trying to tap into that fervent anti-government sense that we get from some of the leading candidates and wreaking havoc is a very catchy phrase and I think one that we're going to be hearing a lot from him," Mordecai Lee, UW-Milwaukee professor said.

Walker is also trying to separate himself from the rest of the Republican presidential candidates by laying out what he'll do if elected.

"Every week starting next week we're going to lay out another one of our reforms -- our big, bold reforms that we're going to do starting on Day One," Walker said.

Scott Walker

Scott Walker

Walker says that starting his first day as president, he would prohibit the federal government from automatically deducting union dues from workers' paychecks.

"What we're going to do is take power out of the hands of the big government union bosses and put it firmly into the hands of the hard-working people of this country," Walker said.

Workers can already voluntarily choose not to have the money taken out, but Walker wants to do away with the automatic deductions altogether.

He didn't explain how federal workers who belong to unions would pay their dues. Walker says he'll have more details in a speech Monday.

Below are excerpts from the speech at Eureka College, as prepared for delivery, issued to FOX6 News by Walker's campaign:

"It is great to stand on the same stage as Ronald Reagan did when he was a student here at Eureka. He knew how to go big and go bold and I am ready to follow his lead.


Ronald Reagan shaped much of my view of the world. In his first inaugural address, he said we should all remember that the federal government did not create the states – the states created the federal government. That's why I talk about sending power and money from Washington back to the hard-working people in the states. That is real reform.

Ronald Reagan helped rebuild the economy by lowering taxes and by getting the federal government out of the way of the people. His policies led to one of the most prosperous times in American history. This is why I work so hard to lower the burden on the hard-working taxpayers. That is pro-growth.

Ronald Reagan rebuilt our military, stood up for our allies, stood up to our enemies and - without apologies - stood for strong American values. That led to one of the most peaceful times in American history. He believed in peace through strength. I do too and I will follow his lead. That is true safety.

President Reagan was not only a conservative and a Republican, he was an eternal optimist in the American people. I am too.

Today, we need a leader who thinks more about the next generation than the next election. Someone who willing to go big and go bold. It is not enough to elect a Republican as President, we need a reformer.


In the 2010 elections, the voters switched from all Democrat to all Republican control of state government. They wanted us to fulfill our campaign promises.

After the elections, I told the new Republican majorities that it was put up or shut up time. We had to keep our word or voters would have every right to throw us out at the next election.

So we went big and we went bold.

Soon after, the protestors started to show up. At first, it was people from Wisconsin. Then, thousands of people came from across America. The big government union bosses bussed them in and flew them in from Chicago and New York and Washington, D.C.

They tried to intimidate us. But we didn't back down.

When more than 100,000 protesters occupied our Capitol, we didn't back down.

When there were death threats against me and threats against my family, we didn't back down.

When they went after a Supreme Court Justice, we didn't back down.

When they took us to federal and state court, we didn't back down.

When they tried to recall six of our state Senators, we didn't back down.

When they tried to recall me, we didn't back down.

And when they made me one of their top targets in America last fall, we didn't back down.

Instead, we fought and we won. We got results - and we did it without compromising our conservative principles.

We took power away from the big government special interests and put it into the hands of the hard-working people. That's pro-taxpayer.

We passed Right to Work so people have the freedom to choose if they want to be in a labor union or not. That's pro-worker.

We fixed a $3.6 billion budget deficit so we could focus on helping people create more jobs and higher wages. Our budgets cut taxes by $4.7 billion so families can keep more of their hard-earned money.

If these conservative reforms can work in a blue state like Wisconsin, imagine what we can do in Washington.

Now, we need a leader who can wreak havoc on Washington and put the American people back in charge of our government. I am that leader. I have been tested like none other in this race and we have solutions to move this country forward.

We have a plan to repeal ObamaCare and put patients and families in charge of their health care decisions and dollars. I call it the Day One Patient Freedom Plan.

On Day One, I will send our plan to Congress. To get them to act, I will require the Members of Congress, their families and their staff to live under the same rules as the rest of America when it comes to ObamaCare. They need an incentive to act immediately to repeal ObamaCare.

You see, we were told that if Republicans claimed the majority in the 2014 elections, they would vote to repeal ObamaCare. Well, it's September and there is not a bill on the President's desk. I get why people are upset with Washington. Heck, I'm upset with Washington. I want them to share our sense of urgency.

Talk is cheap. Voters want action.

As Governor, I authorized my state to join the federal lawsuit against ObamaCare on my first day in office. When people look at my record, even Democrats acknowledge that I do what I say I'm going to do. I don't back down.


On Day One, I will terminate the bad deal with Iran.

On Day One, I will end President Obama's unlawful executive actions on illegal immigration. The President himself previously said some twenty-two times that he couldn't do what he ended up doing last November.


These are just a few of the big and bold actions I will take on Day One as President of the United States. On Monday, I will travel to Las Vegas to layout our big, bold ideas to transfer power from the big government union bosses to the hard-working taxpayers.

For example, on Day One, I will stop the government from taking money out of the paychecks of federal employees for political union dues. That protects workers from being forced to give money to candidates they don't support.

I've won those battles in Wisconsin and believe me, I won't back down from the battles in Washington.

Going forward, we will present another specific solution - each week - to address the challenges facing America.

To wreak havoc on Washington, America needs a leader with real solutions. Political rhetoric is not enough - we need a plan of action. Actions speak louder than words. I have a plan to move this country forward.

To wreak havoc on Washington, America also needs a leader who has been tested. I have been tested like no one else in this race. We passed those tests and now, I am ready to lead this exceptional country."

Following his speech at Eureka College, Governor Scott Walker will hold a town hall event in Nevada on Monday. Walker's campaign officials say he'll reveal his plans to address labor issues nationally, as he successfully did in Wisconsin.


Gov. Scott Walker holds Nevada town hall

Town hall will begin at approximately 3:30 PM PDT

XTreme Manufacturing
1415 West Bonanza Road
Las Vegas, Nevada 89106

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Google Map for coordinates 40.713980 by -89.267575.


  • grunt

    Are you suggesting the union zombies won’t vote for him now because of this? They wouldn’t have voted for him anyway.

  • Alene Bidwell

    Actually what Walker is talking about doing will take the power out of the hands of hard-working people and put it into the hands of Corporations. The hard-working people will no longer have any power in the workplace. Through unions hard-working people finally had some power in the workplace. But that will all end under Scott Walker.

  • Alene Bidwell

    One other thing. Walker NEVER campaigned on busting unions before the 2010 election. That promise was only to himself to bust the public unions, just like Reagan did. He thinks he is the second coming of Ronald Reagan. I guarantee you Reagan would have never done much of what Walker has done and is doing. His mental fixation on Ronald Reagan is very unhealthy. Who is the “real” Scott Walker. Does he even know?

  • james

    He once said he voted for Ronald Reagan, even though he was too young to do so. Meaning that he is either lying or committed voter fraud. I wish he would just go back to Wisconsin where he is beloved by all the beer guzzling simpletons

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