- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 18, 2017

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Gov. Scott Walker rides a Harley-Davidson motorcycle, jogs in a red Wisconsin T-shirt and touts his record in office in a minute-long online video released Wednesday ahead of the formal launch of his re-election campaign.

Democrats were quick to label it a “revisionist campaign stunt” that obfuscates Walker’s true record of not fulfilling his signature job-creation campaign promise, rejecting federal money to expand Medicaid coverage and cutting school funding.

The latest jostling and posturing foreshadows the issues that will be central to the 2018 race, more than a year before voters will decide whether to send Walker back for a third term. Eight Democrats have already said they’re running, while several others are considering doing so.

Walker said Wednesday that he will formally launch his campaign the first full week of November. This will mark the fourth time Walker will be on the ballot for governor - he was first elected in 2010, won a 2012 recall and was re-elected to a second term in 2014. The 2018 election will also be the first for Walker since he unsuccessfully ran for president, dropping out in September 2015.

The new video features Walker talking about his record of creating jobs, lowering taxes, investing in schools, freezing tuition at the University of Wisconsin and increasing health care accessibility during his years as governor.

It features a clip of Walker at a White House ceremony this year announcing the deal to bring Foxconn Technology Group and possibly thousands of jobs to the state with a voiceover of Walker saying Wisconsin is “open for business.” The video shows Walker at the podium, with House Speaker Paul Ryan, of Janesville, next to him.

“But there’s more to be done,” Walker says. “Investing in training for our workers. Helping people create jobs. Making our schools even better. At the end of each day, after all of the miles and conversations, I can’t wait for the alarm to ring to see what opportunities tomorrow will bring.”

The video ends with a shot of Walker riding his Harley down the road with him asking the viewer, “Are you with me?”

Not surprisingly, the state’s Democratic Party isn’t.

If Walker were honest the video would detail his refusal to accept federal Medicaid expansion money, cuts in funding to public schools and tax giveaways to the rich, party spokeswoman Melanie Conklin said in a statement.

Walker should also talk about his failure to fulfill his signature 2010 campaign promise to create 250,000 private sector jobs, a pledge he’s yet to hit after nearly seven years in office, she said.

And if the video were accurate, when he’s riding his motorcycle he would be “jostled around on Wisconsin’s crumbling roads,” Conklin said.


Follow Scott Bauer on Twitter at https://twitter.com/sbauerAP

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