Carson brings message to Waukesha
Prominent doctor praises Walker’s reforms
Waukesha Freeman, May 30, 2013, Page A6 Opinion
Gov. Scott Walker caused a bit of a stir with a trip to Iowa for a fundraiser last week. The Hill reports Walker’s speech was well received by Iowa Republicans. Iowa will again be the first presidential nomination contest in 2016, so impressing the Republicans there is important.
The Hill reports that Walker’s impressive fundraising ability as well as his ability to appeal to both social and economic conservatives would make him a formidable candidate for president. For someone outside of the Washington, D.C., spotlight, Walker is attracting a lot of attention.
What took Walker to national prominence is how he persevered during the recall election last year and the demonstrations in Madison. In the modern era, no Wisconsin politician has been more vilified than Walker for his Act 10 reforms, reforms that have proven to be the fiscal remedy the state needed.
The campaign for re-election and the national attention it brought made Walker into a national figure and gave him a national fundraising base. If Walker becomes president someday, the leftists in Madison will only have themselves to blame.
Another person who has been talked about as a possible presidential candidate is Dr. Benjamin Carson. He is coming today to speak to a capacity crowd at the Waukesha Expo Center at an event sponsored by Americans for Prosperity.
Carson originally gained fame as a neurosurgeon. Hollywood even made a film about his life, “Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story,” starring Cuba Gooding Jr.
But Carson’s new claim to political fame was a speech he gave at the National Prayer Breakfast in February with President Barack Obama in attendance. Carson’s speech, hailed by many, was forthright and unabashed in its conservative message.
In an interview last week, I asked Carson if he had any plans for a special announcement tonight. “People are always going to continue to ask me if I am running for political office, and I am going to continue to say that’s not my intention but I’ll leave that in the hands of God.”
Since Carson is coming to Wisconsin, I asked what he thought of the attempt by the Democrats to recall the governor over Act 10, the legislation that limited collective bargaining for state employees, and the demonstrations in Madison. Carson’s answer really showed how the left’s antics in Madison were seen nationally.
“I tend to be a relatively nonpartisan person, and a lot of people say, ‘Well, you’re a conservative Republican.’ Actually, I’m an independent. But what I tend to do is look at things that make sense. A lot of those things tend to be more conservative. That’s just the way they tend to fall.
“And the way I look at it, what Scott Walker was talking about was fiscal responsibility. Now in the process of being fiscally responsible, we also have to be socially responsible. So we have to look at the most important things, and we have to learn how to prioritize.
“That’s where bipartisanship comes in. People need to be able to discuss, without getting to corners and throwing hand grenades at each other, what are the things that are most important in our society. We clearly cannot do everything. And until we can have those kinds of discussions, we’re never going to make any progress.
“That’s what I meant when I said that an eagle has to have two wings to fly. It’s got to have a left wing and a right wing. Everybody has important things to say. Everybody has reasons for what they have to say. We need to be able to sit down and rationally discuss those things. That’s the only way we can make progress.”
Since Carson’s speech at the National Prayer Breakfast, he, too, has been the target of the left’s ire. When Carson brings his message of personal responsibility, free-market solutions, and the need to rise above partisan politics, will the left hear what Carson has to say? Or will they continue to personally attack the man for daring to be an African- American claiming to have conservative views?
My guess is the latter, and the left won’t see how their attacks have made Carson and Walker even more important nationally.