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Walker Says 2011 Protests Prepared Him to Deal with Potential Terror Threats

Alex Wong/Getty Images

Democrats and other critics of Gov. Scott Walker are outraged over comments he made at the CPAC conference in Washington, D.C.

During a question and answer session Thursday, Walker portrayed himself as prepared to stand up to terrorists -- if elected president -- because of his experience facing down pro-union protesters at the state Capitol, four years ago. That was the time during which tens of thousands of protesters demonstrated for weeks in opposition to Act 10, Walker’s signature legislation, which stripped public unions of most of their collective bargaining rights.

“To ensure that the threat from radical Islamic terrorists do not wash up on American soil, we will have someone who leads and ultimately will send a message not only that we will protect American soil, but do not, do not take this upon freedom-loving people anywhere else in the world," Walker said. "We need a leader with that kind of confidence. If I can take on 100,000 protesters, I can do the same, across the world.”

The Democratic National Committee released this statement in response, attributed to DNC spokesman Mo Elleithee: “If Scott Walker thinks that it’s appropriate to compare working people speaking up for their rights to brutal terrorists, then he is even less qualified to be president than I thought.”

A spokesman for Walker says the comment at CPAC was meant to imply that he is strong when it comes to facing adversity – not that he believes union members and their backers should be equated with terrorists.

Ann-Elise Henzl became News Director in September 2017.
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