Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) said Saturday that he might consider a presidential run in years to come but that his list of priorities is very much focused on his goals for his day job.
“Someday, maybe once we get past all this, we’ll take a look at it,” Walker said in an interview with Post Politics at the Conservative Political Action Conference in suburban Washington.
Walker noted that he has set goals for lowering the state’s unemployment rate and that he’s still got a reelection campaign in 2014. He said both of those will come before any conversations about running for president.
“That’s not anything I’ve really spent a whole lot of time thinking about,” he said.
Walker’s openness to a future presidential bid was first reported by Politico’s Jonathan Martin. The governor put himself on the national political radar after his big win in a recall election last year. The recall was spurred by Walker’s move to curb the collective bargaining rights of public-sector unions, which made him a hero of conservatives.
“Would I ever be [interested in running for president]? Possibly. I guess the only thing I’d say is I’m not ruling it out,” Walker told Martin.
In the Politico story, Walker declined to say whether he would commit to serving a full term if reelected next year. He continued to decline to do so in a media availability after his CPAC.
In a later interview with Post Politics, Walker suggested that he was creating more of a story than he intended to and that he owed that to his plainspoken style.
“I tend to … answer questions pretty straightforwardly,” Walker said, likening himself to a more reserved, Midwestern Chris Christie.
The governor noted that he has already won two elections in the past two and a half years and said he’s in no hurry to shift his gaze beyond his goals at the state capitol.
“For me, anything that takes my eye off of that is not just a distraction — it makes it more difficult for me to get to that,” Walker said.