Andrew Reuter
People walking the streets of Scott Walker's hometown sound off on his presidential bid.

In Walker's home town, opinions on his presidential bid

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Catherine W. Idzerda
July 14, 2015

DELAVAN—Gov. Scott Walker announced his run for president Monday.

The news came as no surprise. Walker has been considering a run for the White House for months, and he was featured on ABC's "Nightly News" on Sunday and "Good Morning America" on Monday morning.

The Gazette asked residents on the red-brick main street of his hometown what they thought of Walker and his chances to become the 45th president.

Ralph Dickman, Lake Geneva: “He's honest. He's not afraid to take on the big guys.”

Dickman likes that Walker is a middle-class guy from a regular place such as Delavan.

“I think that's what we need, somebody from the middle class down here where the problems are,” Dickman said. “I think he's the man for our presidency. I think he's the one. He's a good man.”

Rod Janes, Darien: Janes said he'd definitely vote for Walker, and he approves of the work the governor has done so far, especially on the budget.

“He's down to earth,” Janes said. “Being from a small town, I think that will help a lot. He's in touch with the ordinary people.”

Chuck Kriegel, now of Lake Geneva but grew up in Delavan: “No, I don't think he has a really good chance. He'll probably do better locally than on a national stage.”

Kriegel said Walker's stance on “hot-button issues” such as the teachers unions and education might make him unpopular.

Kriegel said he doesn't vote.

“It doesn't really matter,” he said. “You get more options for cell phones in the country than you do for candidates. We really don't have anybody that's much different.”

Viki Pfister, Delavan: She's sure that Walker's election would make “a lot of people in this part of the country” happy.

The area tends to lean Republican.

Pfister leans the other way and wouldn't vote for Walker.

“I just, in general, hope that whomever gets this election that we can work more cooperatively,” Pfister said. “I don't like the partisan attitude, no matter which side it comes from. I think it's very destructive for our country. We need to learn to work together; we need to learn that it's win some, lose some, and that's the way we all gain.”

Keith Simmons, Delavan: “I think he's going to be good. He's honest and frank with everybody.”

Simmons has watched Walker crisscross the Midwest and noted that he has been well-received. Simmons described Walker's chances as “pretty good.”

“I don't want to see another Clinton or Bush in office,” Simmons said.

Ralph Williams, Elkhorn: Williams said he'd “absolutely” vote for Walker.

“He's doing a good job as governor. He's not from the Washington area. He's a man with his own vision. I think he'd be good for the country.”

Williams said Walker knows “what it's like for the working class” in America.

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