Barrett Goes After Walker Early in Debate

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett is going after Gov. Scott Walker in the opening minutes of the first debate before the June 5 recall election.

Barrett said in opening statements of Friday's debate in Milwaukee that the election is not a rematch or a do-over because Walker has torn apart the state and that can't be undone.

Both Barrett and Walker say the election is about the future of the state. Walker says people want to move on from the turmoil of the past year.

The recall was spurred over anger related to Walker's proposal effectively ending collective bargaining rights for most public workers.

Walker and Barrett will meet for a second and final debate on Thursday.


arrett says Walker purposefully divided state

Eds: APNewsNow. Updates with details from debate. Will be updated

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett says Gov. Scott Walker purposefully divided Wisconsin with his collective bargaining proposal last year.

Barrett said in Friday's debate in Milwaukee that Walker decided to use a budget crisis "to try and divide and conquer this state."

Walker's proposal effectively ended collective bargaining rights for most public workers. Walker has refused to say whether he would sign or veto a bill that would go further and make Wisconsin a right to work state, saying he will oppose such a proposal and it will never pass.

But Barrett said during the debate Walker refuses to say if he'd veto such a bill because he would sign it.

The recall election is June 5.


Walker says he has high integrity

Eds: APNewsNow. Updates with details from debate. Will be updated

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Gov. Scott Walker says he's shown high integrity his entire life and he will continue to show that in the face of an ongoing secret criminal probe that's already ensnared some of his former top aides and associates.

Walker was asked about the ongoing investigation during Friday's recall election debate in Milwaukee.

Walker says his opponent Democratic Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett continues to bring up the investigation because he is desperate and wants to distract from his record.

Barrett in the debate renewed his call on Walker to release emails related to the probe and reveal who is funding a criminal defense fund he has established.

Walker says he's been told by investigators he is not the focus of the investigation.


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