Barrett Hits Walker with Zingers in Final Debate
Tom Barrett nailed Scott Walker with a couple of zingers in their final debate Thursday night.
The line of the night went to Barrett when the Milwaukee mayor said, “I have a police department that arrests felons. He has a practice of hiring them.”
This was a one-two punch, since it allowed Barrett to defend his own record in Milwaukee and at the same time attack Walker for the John Doe scandal that gets closer and closer to Walker every day. Barrett pointed out that on Thursday a thirteenth person was granted immunity to give testimony in this scandal, which has already led to one conviction and the charging of half a dozen Walker aides from when he was Milwaukee county executive.
Barrett also scored by denouncing a lurid commercial Walker is running about a murder of a baby in Milwaukee. Sitting just inches away from Walker, Barrett said, forcefully: “You should be ashamed of that commercial, Scott Walker.”
And Barrett also landed a blow after the moderator asked Walker whether he’d veto a right-to-work bill (Walker’s biggest donor had asked him to make Wisconsin a right-to-work state). Walker dodged the question, and Barrett pounced, saying the reason Walker wouldn’t say he’d veto it is because “he’d have a fall from grace and wouldn’t be the poster boy of the far right.”
Barrett said that Walker’s policies were working for billionaires but not for middle class Wisconsinites. And he played upon Walker’s own words that he intended to “divide and conquer” and “drop the bomb” on workers.
As in the last debate, Walker was unflappable, and he had a comeback for everything and talked much longer than Barrett on almost every answer.
Walker even had the chutzpah to say that his assault on collective bargaining was “fundamentally about fairness,” saying that public sector workers should have to pay a lot for health care like everyone else.
Barrett pointed out that the public sector unions had agreed to pay more for health care but that Walker wouldn’t accept that and instead tried to crush them.
Keeping to his script, Walker said the election is about “moving forward.”
Barrett said the election is about restoring “trust” and “Wisconsin values.”
The voters of Wisconsin get to sort this one out on June 5.
If you liked this story by Matthew Rothschild, the editor of The Progressive magazine, check out his story “Wisconsin gubernatorial recall race is historic."
Follow Matthew Rothschild @mattrothschild on Twitter
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