Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) on Thursday said that his experience with protests over his law eliminating collective bargaining rights for public employees has prepared him to confront terrorists.
After his speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference, an audience member asked Walker how he would deal with threats like the Islamic State if he were president.
“I want a commander-in-chief who will do everything in their power to ensure that the threat from radical Islamic terrorists do not wash up on American soil. We will have someone who leads and ultimately will send a message not only that we will protect American soil but do not take this upon freedom-loving people anywhere else in the world,” he responded. “We need a leader with that kind of confidence. If I can take on a 100,000 protesters, I can do the same across the world.”
National Review’s Jim Geraghty lambasted Walker’s “terrible” response on how he would address ISIL.
“The protesters in Wisconsin, so furiously angry over Walker’s reforms and disruptive to the procedures of passing laws, earned plenty of legitimate criticism. But they’re not ISIS,” Geraghty wrote. “They’re not beheading innocent people. They’re Americans, and as much as we may find their ideas, worldview, and perspective spectacularly wrongheaded, they don’t deserve to be compared to murderous terrorists.”
The Democratic National Committee also denounced Walker’s comparison.
“If Scott Walker thinks that it’s appropriate to compare working people speaking up for their rights to brutal terrorists, then he is even less qualified to be president than I thought,” DNC Communications Director Mo Elleithee said in a Thursday statement.
Watch Walker’s response: