Scott Walker

Contact Information

Telephone:608-266-1212 (Main phone number)
Telephone:608-441-1640 (Main campaign number)
Campaign finance

Candidate Background

Birth place:Colorado Springs, CO
Residence:Wauwatosa, WI
First Elected:2010


Next Election:2014

Undergraduate education: Marquette University


Scott Walker was born in Colorado Springs, Colo., and currently lives in Wauwatosa, Wis. He also spends time at the governor's mansion in Maple Bluff, Wis. He attended Marquette University but left before he graduated to work for the American Red Cross in 1990.

He won a special election to the state Assembly in 1993, was re-elected four times, and remained there until 2002 when he won a special election to serve as Milwaukee County executive. He was re-elected to that position in 2004 and 2008.

Walker ran unsuccessfully for the gubernatorial nomination in 2006, but dropped out of the race due to poor fundraising. He was elected governor in 2010.

He faced a recall election in 2012, sparked by anger over his proposal to curb collective bargaining rights for public workers. Walker won the recall in June 2012.

He and his wife, Tonette, have two sons.


Gov. Scott Walker became in 2012 the first governor in U.S. history to win a recall election. His victory against Democratic Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett came just 18 months into his term of office and was motivated by anger from public unions, Democrats and others over Walker's curbing of collective bargaining for public workers.

The recall win capped a tumultuous start to Walker's first term, marked by massive protests in February and March 2011 in the wake of his collective bargaining proposal. The fight made Wisconsin the center of the debate over union rights and sparked 14 other recalls of state office holders, mostly Republicans.

Walker argued the collective bargaining changes, which also required workers to pay more for health insurance and pensions, were needed to deal with a budget shortfall. Other moves he made to balance the budget, including deep cuts to public education, also motivated recall organizers who collected more than 900,000 signatures to force the election.

Walker raised more than $66 million during the recall, shattering his own previous record set during the 2010 campaign. He was able to collect above normal fundraising limits thanks to a state law that allows those targeted for recall to raise unlimited amounts. Walker traveled the country as his political profile rose during the recall.

Walker was elected governor in 2010 amid a Republican wave that saw the GOP also capture control from Democrats of both chambers of the Legislature. That control allowed Walker and Republicans to pass a conservative agenda that also included redrawing political boundaries to their favor, a restrictive photo identification requirement for voters and lawsuit reform.

Walker first ran for governor in 2006 but dropped out of the Republican primary as fundraising lagged. He immediately began laying the groundwork for his next run in 2010.

Walker promised in that campaign to create 250,000 jobs in his first term through a series of tax cuts and other reforms. He reiterated that promise during the 2012 recall campaign, even though job creation has been sluggish and he was nowhere near the pace required to meet the goal.

He also successfully stopped a high-speed rail line between Madison and Milwaukee, to be paid for with $810 million in federal stimulus money, in the months between his election and when he took office.

Walker opposes embryonic stem cell research, which was pioneered at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and abortion in all instances. He also supports tying teacher pay to performance and grading schools based on how well students do on standardized tests and other measures.

Walker's political career began in 1993 when he won a special election to the state Assembly representing a district that covered the suburban Milwaukee community of Wauwatosa. He was active in criminal justice issues while in the Legislature, taking a lead on a bill passed in 1999 called truth-in-sentencing that required prisoners to serve their entire sentence and not have time taken off for good behavior.

American Conservative Union Rating: Not rated

Americans for Democratic Action Rating: Not rated


Scott Walker won his August 2014 primary, he will face Mary Burke in November.

(Last updated by The Associated Press on August 14, 2014.)

Last updated 3:16pm March 1, 2018