With two days to go before Wisconsin’s recall election, Gov. Walker is looking very strong in the polls. According to Intrade, he has a 96 percent chance of winning on Tuesday. Democrats clearly aren’t winning on the issues, but they hope they have found something else that can turn the tide for them.
Late Saturday night, a left-wing anti-Walker website reported an unconfirmed, second-hand rumor that Gov. Walker fathered a “love child” 24 years ago.
The website, Wisconsin Citizens Media Co-op, describes itself as “a group of citizen journalists who began covering the Wisconsin Uprising in February, 2011. We came from different walks of life, different professional backgrounds and different parts of the state to document the dismantling of democratic process and tradition taking place in our state under the rightwing onslaught of the Scott Walker regime.”
Here is the Wisconsin Citizens Media Co-op’s “scoop”:
Bernadette Gillick was a college freshman in 1988 when she first met Scott Walker. It was spring semester, and she had just transferred to Marquette University. She was assigned a room in O’Donnell Hall (then a women’s dormitory), which she shared with her new roommate, Ruth (not her real name). Ruth was dating Scott Walker, who was 20 at the time, and, according to Bernadette, Ruth was deeply in love with him.
Midway through that spring semester, Bernadette alleges, Ruth found out she was pregnant. She informed her boyfriend, Scott, and initially he was supportive. That support changed to callous indifference for his girlfriend’s predicament after Scott informed his parents of the pregnancy.
Bernadette reports that at this point Scott began denying that he was the father of the baby, and when Ruth said she was considering an abortion, he claimed he didn’t care, as he wasn’t the father anyway.
Bernadette remembers being present when Ruth was dealing with the wrath of Scott’s mother, who allegedly admonished Ruth for trying to “ruin [her son’s] reputation.”
“I supported her [Ruth] as he [Scott] went from encouraging her to get an abortion, to telling me it was in my best interest to keep my mouth shut, to denying that he was the father and having his own mother call her and tell her to stop erroneously accusing her son of paternity,” Bernadette recounts.
It was a “horrible time” for her friend. “Imagine her being 18 years old and pregnant, walking around Marquette’s Jesuit Catholic campus with her boyfriend denying he was the father,” says Bernadette.
All this was taking place while Walker was running for student body president. As one of his classmates, Dr. Glenn Barry recalled, Walker’s campaign was, “one of the dirtiest in school history.” The student newspaper Marquette Tribune called him “unfit for office” after his campaign was discovered collecting and throwing out copies of their paper that endorsed his opponent. Commenting on the election and Walker’s political career and style at Marquette, he noted, “Walker lost on all counts, but not before destroying a few people’s reputations, and amassing personal power.”
If Bernadette’s story is true, Ruth – and eventually their child – were just a few of the people who got in the way of Walker’s quest for power.
After consulting with her family, Ruth decided against an abortion. Bernadette was with Ruth in the hospital for the birth of her child later that year (and says Walker was not present), and later stood up as a bridesmaid in Ruth’s 1992 marriage to another man. She says Walker eventually had to concede that he was the father, after the birth and paternity test.
The website acknowledges that it did not speak to the alleged mother of the alleged child and was not “able to independently verify Bernadette’s account.” Go figure.
In addition, it says it did not receive comment from either Gov. Walker or anyone currently serving on his campaign team.
This thinly-sourced rumor looks to most people like a last-minute smear job, but that didn’t stop the Daily Kos and other anti-Walker loons from jumping all over it:
The desperation. It reeks.
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter Daniel Bice easily debunked this malicious smear:
I am getting a lot of emails because of this post. Two things: (1) I tracked down and talked to Dr. Gillick’s freshman-year roommate at MU yesterday, and she adamantly denies that Walker is the father of her child. Yes, she got pregnant as a first-year student, but she believes Dr. Gillick is mixing up stories; and (2) I Can Read CCAP has taken a family court suit involving Scott Alan Walker and mixed it up with the governor, Scott Kevin Walker.
But once progressives sink their teeth into a smear, they don’t let go.