Scott Walker running for governor for a third time in four years

MILWAUKEE - Scott Walker is running for governor ... again, for the third time in four years.

First elected in 2010, Walker survived a recall effort in 2012 and now is asking Wisconsin for another term.

"They've made me their number one target," said Walker.

The huge protests that erupted three years ago when he eliminated the bargaining rights of public sector unions also made Walker a national figure with possible ambitions outside Madison.

A book and a national speaking tour have created a presidential buzz which Walker does not fully dismiss.

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Scott Walker on the campaign trail
CBS News

Asked if he has promised the voters of Wisconsin that he will serve a four-year term, Walker replied:

"I said my plan is to be governor for the next four years. The plan I've laid out and talked about publicly is a four-year plan. It's not a two-year plan or a year-and-a-half plan."

Still, Walker has shown an ability to raise a lot of money from donors who applaud his tax and budget-cutting ways and dream of him in the White House.

But Walker is vulnerable because he promised 250,000 new jobs and created only 111,000 of them.

His Democratic opponent is Mary Burke.

Asked about the message sent to the rest of the country about the kind of policies and politics he practices if Scott Walker is defeated next Tuesday, Mary Burke replied:

"It will, because what we have seen in Wisconsin under Scott Walker is extreme Tea Party agenda."

Both candidates have had help from party headliners, though Walker sounded less than thrilled when we asked him about one helper in particular.

"I think in the end [Governor Christie of New Jersey] is coming because he asked if he could come and we didn't want to say 'no'."

The Democrats have brought the president to Milwaukee to energize voters in this close race. It should be a fertile field, since the ward in which President Obama is speaking tonight gave him 99 percent of its vote in 2012.

  • Dean Reynolds

    Dean Reynolds is a CBS News National Correspondent based in Chicago.