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Scott Walker Is Trying to Save His Failing Campaign by Bashing Unions

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Reprinted from The Nation

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The Republican candidate's backers plan to spend as much as $16 million on an anti-labor ad campaign. But it won't work.


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There is modest irony in the fact that Scott Walker hopes to revive his collapsing campaign for the Republican presidential nomination with a scheme to follow the traditional Labor Day pivot point of the electoral schedule with a new push to position the Wisconsin governor as the most ardently anti-union presidential candidate since Robert "Taft-Hartley" Taft mounted his failing bid for the Republican nomination in 1952.

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Of course, Walker will not run as well as Taft did in his failed-but-credible attempt to wrestle the 1952 nomination from Dwight Eisenhower -- a mainstream Republican who, as president, would renew the party's historic commitment to respect, and in many instances, aid unions.

Walker's campaign is in crisis. At the start of August, he was widely considered to be one of the top-three contenders for the Republican nomination. His poll standing was such that Fox News positioned him next to emerging front runner Donald Trump on the stage at the first debate. But Walker's performance in that debate was dismal. His answers were vapid, and inquiries from the Fox hosts about his ever-changing positions and empty promises embarrassed a candidate who has always relied on Midwest-nice media to let him avoid questions about his competence.

As a result, Walker's poll numbers quickly plummeted nationally and in the first-primary state of New Hampshire. More recently, he has tanked in the essential first-caucus state of Iowa.

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