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Gov. Walker makes Time's 100 influential people list


UPDATED Thursday, April 24, 2013 --- 6:13 p.m.

The national spotlight is shining on Wisconsin today and more specifically, the capitol. Governor Scott Walker was named as one of Time Magazine's most influential people.

Each year the magazine does their homework and comes up with the top 100 people who influence our world, and this year Governor Walker made the cut.

"For me it's less about a speech or comment that I made but more about the reforms that we did...It's an honor but it's an honor I share with many people across the state who helped us achieve the great reforms that we did in the last few years," says Walker.

It's all about Act 10 and the recall election. In the Time article written by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie he says walker has "courage in his convictions" writing "despite these threats, he stood tall," and his reforms "have made Wisconsin a better place to live and work."

"Love it or hate it there's no question it represented a significant change in policy that propelled Walker to national prominence," says UW-Madison Political Science Professor, Ken Mayer.

Mayer says Walker is a polarizing figure, and influential doesn't necessarily mean in a good way.

Although Walker shares the spotlight with national leaders like President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry, he's also on the list with North Korean Dictator Kim Jung Un and al-Qaeda terrorist Abu Bakr al Baghdadi.

"This is not a statement by Time that everything that Walker has done is good."

So what does this mean for Walker? Mayer says to start, Time isn't nearly as influential as it was years ago, and it's circulation is way down. He says in terms of the gubernatorial election, he thinks Wisconsinites have had 4 years to decide if they like him or not, and this ranking probably won't change their minds. But it could set the stage for a 2016 presidential election.

"For people outside of Wisconsin, people who might be peripherally engaged with politics and might not know much about him, this is an introduction on a national stage."

He says either way, this ranking can only help Walker out.

"Sort of hard to see how this could generate any negative press for him."

Although there are rumors about Walker running for president, he has not said that himself. He says right now he's just focusing on finishing the work that still has to be done here in Wisconsin.

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Posted Thursday, April 24, 2014 --- 8:40 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Republican New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is singing the praises of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker in Time magazine's list of the 100 most influential people of 2014.

Both Christie and Walker are considering 2016 presidential runs, making Christie's endorsement of Walker all the more interesting. But it's also not unprecedented. Christie is chairman of the Republican Governors Association and has previously spoken highly of Walker as he faces re-election this fall.

Christie's three paragraph item on Walker cites his fight over collective bargaining and his successful defeat of a recall election in 2012 as signs of Walker's leadership.

Walker is pictured leaning against a Harley-Davidson motorcycle with the state Capitol in the background.

In 2011, Walker wrote a piece for U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan when he made the list.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press


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