Phoney call reveals Governor Walker's strategy - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Phoney call reveals Governor Walker's strategy


Eau Claire (WQOW) - A blogger from New York impersonates conservative billionaire David Koch and is able to have a private 20-minute phone call with Governor Scott Walker. That phone call was posted on the Internet Wednesday.

On the call, Governor Walker freely offers a look in to the strategy to have his budget proposal passed.

The call starts off like any other.

"Hi. This is Scott Walker," Governor Walker says.

"Scott, David Koch. How are you?" a man says.

"Hey, David. I'm good. Yourself?" Walker says.

But the caller is not Republican businessman David Koch. He's actually a blogger from the Buffalo Beast newspaper in New York.

The governor's office confirms it is Scott Walker speaking, thinking he's on the line with Koch, a supporter and donor. This is video of Koch's company's Madison office. During the 20-minute conversation, posted on YouTube, the governor reveals the strategy to pass his budget bill.

"I've got layoff notices ready," Walker says. "We put out the at-risk notices. We'll announce Thursday. They'll go out early next week. Probably 5,000 to 6,000 state workers will get at-risk notices for layoffs. We might ratchet that up a little."

"You stay firm," Walker says at another time. "In this case, we wait it out. If they want to start sacrificing thousands of public workers who'll be laid off, there's going to be pressure on senators to come back."

He also talks about the teachers who've protested and those who make up the current group of protesters.

"The teachers union did some polling and focus groups, I think, and found out that the public turned on them the minute they closed school down for a couple days," the governor says. "The guys that we have left are largely from out of state and I keep dismissing it in all my press comments, saying, 'They're mostly from out of state.'"

Walker points out his goal in the debate.

"I said, 'This is about the budget. This is about public sector unions,'" he says.

Now knowing the caller wasn't real, Walker commented Wednesday afternoon.

"The bottom line is the things I said are the things I've said publicly all along," he says. He later adds, "I'm not going to allow one prank phone call to be a distraction from the reality that we have a job to do."

The blogger impersonating David Koch says it was easy to get on the line with Governor Walker, after talking with two staff members. The governor says it shows he's accessible.

The blogger said he did it to test how easy it would be to get the governor one-on-one after Democrats complained about him not returning their calls.

If you'd like to hear the full conservation, we've posted links on the side of this Web story. Some language may not be suitable for all listeners.

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