EXCLUSIVE…Dave Walker: “2018 May Be Our Last Chance to Save the State”May 3, 2017
Republican Dave Walker, who's exploring a run for governor, talked to Reclaim Connecticut about his campaign, his credentials, and the state's "last chance."
Dave Walker, a Republican and former U.S. Comptroller General, didn’t mince words when asked about the state of the state.
“2018 may be our last chance to save the state of Connecticut,” he said.
Walker sounds like a man who wants to do it. In April, Walker formed an exploratory committee for statewide office. He is exploring a run for governor, one of up to eight GOP candidates eyeing the state’s highest office.
Walker took time to answer some of Reclaim Connecticut’s questions about his young campaign, his background, and what can save the state in an extensive interview on Tuesday.
WHY HE’S RUNNING
When asked why he’s exploring a run for governor, Walker’s answer was straightforward: “To try to help turn around Connecticut and to create a better future for the citizens of Connecticut.”
WHAT CT NEEDS TO DO
Why does Walker think he’s the man for the job? For one, his experience as the “CEO of the U.S. Government Accountability Office,” or GAO. The GAO’s job, according to its website, is to investigate “how the federal government spends taxpayer dollars.”
“I led a widely-praised transformation of the GAO which, among other things, resulted in a $110 to $1 return on investment for the American people,” Walker said. “That transformation effort is transferable to the state of Connecticut.”
Walker also discussed his more recent experience at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), an international accounting and consulting firm where he has “advised top government leaders on how to improve their performance, assure their accountability, and put their finances in order.”
“And that’s exactly what Connecticut needs to do,” Walker said.
THE WALKER PLAN
When asked about Connecticut’s finances, Walker offered a multi-step plan for getting Connecticut back on its feet:
- “Establish an ongoing and productive relationship between state government, the municipalities, and the business community”
- “Significant regulatory relief”
- “Comprehensive tax reform”
- “Intelligent infrastructure investment”
- “Impose a spending cap and right size state government”
- “Reform the state’s education funding and welfare programs”
- “Restructure state employee and compensation benefits” and make them “sustainable for the future”
- “Implement Municipal Accountability Boards for troubled municipalities”
- “Eliminate conflicts, collusion and convicts in government”
GETTING “IN FRONT”
Reclaim Connecticut asked Walker about fundraising for his campaign, given that it’s an important indicator of progress and success for statewide candidates.
“Well it’s all about networking,” Walker said. “It’s networking with people that have common interests and common concerns.”
The goal, according to Walker? “Reach out to affinity groups and get in front of as many people as possible in order to qualify for voluntary public financing by the end of February of next year.”
THE LAST CHANCE
When asked for any thoughts to leave Reclaim Connecticut readers, Walker said Connecticut “is a beautiful state with a proud history.” But, Walker added, “it’s gone from a leading state, to at or near last place, in too many categories in the last 30 years.”
“I’ve got direct, proven experience in making real transformational change happen in government,” Walker said. “And that’s what Connecticut needs.”
“Merit matters in 2018!” Walker concluded.
Walker’s website is DaveWalkerCT.com.
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