ABC News Twice Says Scott Walker 'At One Point Was the Most Divisive Politician in America'

As NewsBusters has reported for years, the liberal media believe one of their jobs is to discredit and defame any potential Republican presidential candidate they believe is too conservative.

ABC's This Week did its part Sunday when during a segment about Republican Wisconsin governor Scott Walker, substitute host Martha Raddatz and chief White House correspondent Jonathan Karl both said he "at one point was the most divisive politician in America" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

MARTHA RADDATZ, SUBSTITUTE HOST: And now Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, a GOP rising star and Tea Party favorite. He made his name taking on unions and is now a possible 2016 contender. Jon Karl is back with the inside story of a man who at one point was the most divisive politician in America.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JON KARL, CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, ABC NEWS: It was nearly three years ago that the Occupy Movement was born. Right here in Madison, Wisconsin.

The focus of the anger, Republican Governor Scott Walker for making a frontal assault against public employee unions with a measure that would strip away most of their collective bargaining rights.

GOVERNOR SCOTT WALKER, WISCONSIN: Some have questioned why we have to reform collective bargaining to balance the budget. The answer is simple, the system is broken.

KARL: For a time Walker seemed to be the most hated man in Wisconsin. Now he is running for re-election and considered by many Republicans to be a top contender for the 2016 Presidential Nomination.

In a new book he tells the story of the confrontation that brought 100,000 protesters outside his office in the Capital Building for weeks on end. He was compared to Hitler and Osama bin Laden. "Time Magazine" declared him "Dead Man Walker". He and his family received death threats.


So with all the politicians in America, as far as Raddatz was concerned, Walker - the governor of a midwestern state with less than 6 million people! - was the most divisive person in politics a few years ago.

But that was just the beginning of the absurdity in this over five minute segment, for not only did Karl reiterate Raddatz's charge, he never once mentioned that in June 2012, Walker survived a recall election winning by a wide margin of 53 to 46 percent:

KARL: Governor Walker, for a while, you were the most divisive man in America. What'd you learn from that?

WALKER: I came in wanting to fix things having a $3.6 billion budget deficit. I was so eager to fix that, I didn't spend my time talking about it with the people of this state.

KARL: When you were elected in 2010, you were a something of a Tea Party hero. What do you make of the Tea Party movement now? I mean, tarnished in many ways. Certainly battered in the polls. Blamed for the government shutdown.

WALKER: I don't think it's a movement that's monolithic. I, like others, was a bit frustrated with the shutdown because I don't think the way you make the compelling case to the American people that we can do better is by shutting things down.

KARL: So the Republicans who pushed that strategy made a mistake?

WALKER: I think so.

KARL: Congress's approval rating has now fallen to 9%, the lowest ever in the gallery.

WALKER: That's really just family members right?

KARL: As you know the most unpopular of the unpopular are Republicans in Congress. Where has the Republican Party just gone bad, gone wrong?


So despite spending a great deal of time with Walker putting together an over five minute segment, Karl never mentioned that the Governor - despite unions from around the country blowing millions of dollars to defeat him - won the recall by a wide margin.

But as you can see, this interview wasn't about letting This Week viewers get to know Walker with a good dose of facts.

This was about bashing him as a divisive figure in a divisive party.

All involved should be ashamed of themselves for putting together a piece the folks at MSNBC would be proud of.

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.