Walker announced he was making the commitment to visit all of Iowa’s 99 counties to follow the tradition of Iowa political leaders such as U.S. Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst and Governor Terry Branstad. The 99-county tour has been a sign of commitment from candidates who want to compete in Iowa. Former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA) who one the 2012 Iowa Caucus completed his own tour.
“We need new fresh leadership, leadership from outside of Washington with big bold ideas, the kind of leadership that actually gets things done,” Walker said to the group. “I proud to tell you that over in Wisconsin, a blue state, we got things done.”
Walker talked about how he took on the unions and won in Wisconsin. “They tried to intimidate us. They threw everything they could, they had 100,000 protestors, they had recalls, they had not only protests, but death threats… In the end we were not intimidated, we stood up for the hard working people of our state, just like we are going to stand up for the hard working people of America,” Walker stated.
A small group of union members were there protesting Walker’s presence in Urbandale.
“We are out here because we believe Scott Walker is trying to hurt the unions, as President he’s going to do even more damage. Unions set the bar, where a lot of wages are today it is because of the unions. If he destroys that, the middle class is already starting to collapse,” Mark Gass, the leader of a group of protestors from AFSCME Iowa Council 61 and AFL-CIO, told Caffeinated Thoughts. Gass said if Walker is elected the middle class collapse would be even worse.
Walker touted a record of success as Governor of Wisconsin.
“We cut taxes by two hundred million dollars. Property taxes in our state are lower today than when we started,” Walker boasted. “Since I’ve been Governor we have passed lawsuit reform and regulatory reform, we defunded Planned Parenthood and passed pro-life legislation.”
“We passed castle doctrine and concealed carry so that law abiding citizens can protect themselves, their families, and their property. I am proud to say in my state you need a photo id to vote in an election. If those reforms can work in a blue state like Wisconsin they can work anywhere in America,” Walker added.
Discussing economic policy Walker said the focus shouldn’t be on raising the minimum wage. “Let the other side talk about how low wages are going to be. Let’s talk about how we are going to lift everyone up in a way that helps everyone live the American dream,” Walker stated.
Walker discussed his public education reforms and efforts to bring more school choice to parents in Wisconsin. “I trust parents to make the right decision for their children,” he said.
He also addressed the current debate over Common Core and federal overreach into K-12 education.
“Going forward I believe in high standards, but I think those standards should be set at the local level – no Common Core, no nationwide school board. We need to take money and power out of Washington and send it back to our states and back to our schools where it is more effective, more efficient and more accountable to the American taxpayer, ” Walker noted.
He pivoted to foreign policy and national security where he gave a stinging criticism of the Obama administration’s handling of foreign affairs.
“Sadly under the Obama-Clinton doctrine, America is leading from behind and that has us headed towards a disaster. You have a president who drew a line in the sand and allowed it to be crossed, a president who called ISIS the JV squad, Yemen a success story and Iran a place we can do business with,” Walker remarked.
Addressing the Iran deal he said, “Iran is not a place that we should be doing business with. As your President I will terminate the bad deal with Iran, reinforce the sanctions, and encourage our allies to do the same.”
He said the greatest threat to America is not climate change, but radical Islamic terrorism.
Prior to his remarks Walker asked for a moment of silence to pray for the families of the Marines killed in a terrorist attack in Chattanooga, TN. He later remarked, “We need to be sure that we honor our men and women in uniform by giving them the resources they need to keep us safe. Not only abroad, but even more after yesterday, giving them the ability to protect themselves on American soil.”
Walker worked the group after his remarks shaking hands. He continues his announcement tour in Iowa in Council Bluffs today and will at the end of the day speak at the FAMiLY Leadership Summit in Ames.
Watch his remarks below: