Clinton rallies Democrats to defeat Gov. Walker

AP News
Posted: Oct 24, 2014 1:36 PM

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Former President Bill Clinton is telling Democrats in Milwaukee that choosing the next governor of Wisconsin "should not be a hard choice."

Clinton campaigned Friday for Mary Burke, who is in a tight race with Republican Gov. Scott Walker.

Clinton says the job of the governor is to create jobs and get people trained to do them. He says the best way to do that is by bringing diverse groups of people together to work toward a common goal.

Clinton says that when voters look at Walker's record, they will see that he divided people and that the state lagged behind the nation in recovering from the recession.

Clinton says that given that, "this should not be a close race."

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

President Bill Clinton planned to campaign in Milwaukee on Friday for gubernatorial candidate Mary Burke, but it wasn't clear whether the get out the vote effort would have much impact because most of those in line described themselves as regular voters who already planned to support Burke.

Burke has been locked for months in a tight race with Republican Gov. Scott Walker, and a Marquette Law School poll released last week showed the two in a dead heat.

Both parties have been seeking star power to invigorate get out the vote efforts in an election where victory will likely depend on who gets more supporters to the polls. First lady Michelle Obama has made two appearances for Burke, and President Barack Obama will campaign with her in Milwaukee on Tuesday. Meanwhile, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is expected to make a second visit to the state to back Walker.

"I can't imagine anybody whose mind is not made up," said Beth Kutka, 61, of Eagle, who came with several friends to see Clinton. "But I think it is the turnout that is important ... hopefully rallies such as this will support, will encourage people to vote."

Marta Meyers, 64, of Milwaukee, and Italian exchange student, Erica Patrignani, 17, of Rome, arrived two hours before doors opened at the hotel where Clinton was speaking. Meyers said she was already committed to voting for Burke because "we need to get rid of Scott Walker."

But she had never heard Clinton speak before and was looking forward to hearing him address health care and advocate for public education. Meyers said she thought get out the vote efforts were important because, while she votes regularly, others don't.

"I tell everyone I see, 'get out and vote,'" she said. "They need to understand how important it is."