Jonathan Chait

Scott Walker Talks To "David Koch" [Updated With Correction]

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A lot of political pranks are cheap and stupid, but this is pretty brilliant:

“He’s just hard-linedwill not talk, will not communicate, will not return phone calls.”

-Wisconsin state Sen. Tim Carpenter (D) on Gov. Walker (source)

Carpenter’s quote made me wonder: who could get through to Gov. Walker? Well, what do we know about Walker and his proposed union-busting, no-bid budget? The obvious candidate was David Koch.

I first called at 11:30 am CST, and eventually got through to a young, male receptionist who, upon hearing the magic name Koch, immediately transferred me to Executive Assistant Governor Dorothy Moore. 

What follows is a lengthy phone call between Walker and a liberal blogger pretending to be Koch. It's quite interesting in all sorts of ways. one is that the fake caller fails to get Walker to endorse a plan to plant troublemakers among the protesters, but he does get him to bite on this:

Walker: Oh yeah, but who watches that? I went on “Morning Joe” this morning. I like it because I just like being combative with those guys, but, uh. You know they’re off the deep end.

Koch: JoeJoe’s a good guy. He’s one of us.

Walker: Yeah, he’s all right. He was fair to me…[bashes NY Senator Chuck Schumer, who was also on the program.]

Koch: Beautiful; beautiful. You gotta love that Mika Brzezinski; she’s a real piece of ass.

Walker: Oh yeah.

Nice!

[Update: This transcription of the call is totally misleading. Walker says "oh yeah" before the "piece of ass" comment, which is mumbled and Walker may not have heard. My apologies to Walker for accepting this transcription at face value. The conversation is interesting but that portion of it is not reliable.]

Another main takeaway from the call is the degree to which Walker, in the face of mounting evidence, seems to really believe the public is on his side. The whole thing is a great window into a candid conversation to which the public would ordinarily never be privy.

 

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