President Shrug: 9 Times Walker Has Refused To Take A Position

September 9, 2015 2:36 p.m.

As numerous Republican presidential contenders have managed to take clear positions on issues like birthright citizenship and Kentucky clerk Kim Davis, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) has often given unclear responses or simpy refused to answer certain questions.

As The Daily Beast’s Betsy Woodruff has noted, Walker has a tendency to begin some answers with words like “yeah” or “absolutely” without actually meaning “yes.” But while that has contributed to some of his more confusing answers, he has also explicitly dodged questions and declined to answer “hypotheticals.”

Syrian Refugees

Most recently, Walker dodged a question from ABC News about whether the U.S. should accept more refugees from Syria as Europe has become overwhelmed with people fleeing the conflict.

“I’m not president today and I can’t be president today,” Walker answered. “Everybody wants to talk about hypotheticals; there is no such thing as a hypothetical.”

He did note that he would work to defeat the Islamic State as president, however.

Birthright Citizenship

Walker offered a series of confusing responses about where he stands on birthright citizenship before finally coming out against repealing or changing the 14th Amendment.

He initially gave MSNBC a confusing answer, saying that birthright citizenship is “not right for this country” adding that the U.S. must “enforce the laws.” Before coming to a conclusion on the issue, he then told CNBC that he was “not taking a position on it one way or another.”

Kentucky Clerk Kim Davis

When numerous Republican presidential candidates spoke out to either defend Kim Davis’ refusal to issue same-sex marriage licenses or argue that she must follow the law, Walker would not give a clear response.

When asked about Walker’s position by TPM, the governor’s campaign issued a vague statement over email: “Gov. Walker has always believed marriage is between one man and one woman and has consistently said that states should have the right to define marriage under the Constitution. As president, he will enforce the law, which means also protecting the religious liberty of all Americans.”

Walker gave a similarly unclear response to conservative radio host Laura Ingraham.

“It’s a balance that you’ve got to have in America between the laws that are out there, but ultimately ensuring the Constitution is upheld. I read that the Constitution is very clear, that people have the freedom of religion. That means you have the freedom to practice your religious beliefs out there,” he said.

Whether Being Gay Is A Choice

He was asked in July whether he believed homosexuality was a choice, to which Walker responded by saying that he didn’t know and that it is “not even an issue for me to be involved in.”

“I don’t know the answer to that question. So, I’m saying I don’t know what the answer to that is. And I’m going to spend my time focused on things that I do know and I can work on,” he said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

The Auto Crisis

When asked in May whether he would have supported the U.S. giving loans to bankrupt auto companies in 2009, Walker said the question was a “hypothetical,” as New York Magazine noted.

“That’s a hypothetical question in the past. We’re going to talk about the future,” he said.

Obama’s Faith

Walker also seemed unsure in February if President Obama is a Christian.

“I don’t know,” Walker told the Washington Post when asked if the President is a Christian. “I’ve actually never talked about it or I haven’t read about that.”

Obama’s Love For America

And when asked if Obama loves America, Walker referred questions to the President.

“You should ask the president what he thinks about America,” he told The Associated Press. “I’ve never asked him, so I don’t know.”


Walker would not answer questions about evolution during a February trip to London.

“For me, I’m going to punt on that one as well,” Walker said when asked if he believes in evolution. “That’s a question a politician shouldn’t be involved in one way or another. So, I’m going to leave that up to you.”

“To me, it’s just one of those, I’m just here to talk about trade, not to pontificate on other issues,” he added.

When asked by Fox News’ Megyn Kelly about his “punt” a few days later, Walker said he did not regret dodging the question and again did not give a clear answer.

“I think God created the Earth,” he said. “I think science and my faith aren’t incompatible.”

Islamic State

Although Walker typically has no problem addressing the Islamic State, he would not answer questions about the terror group during his trip to London either.

“I don’t think it’s polite to respond on policy in the United States when you’re in a foreign country,” he said. “That’s certainly something I’ll answer in the future.”

Latest News
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: