It was a double dose of bad news for presidential candidate Scott Walker yesterday, as the most recent Marquette University poll shows the governor’s approval rating underwater, with broad opposition to his “Iowa Caucus Budget,” and the latest federal jobs numbers show another month of huge private sector job losses on Walker’s watch.

Last month, the latest quarterly federal jobs numbers were released showing Wisconsin ranked 40th among the states in private sector job growth under Scott Walker, lagging our neighbors in the Midwest and growing jobs at just about half the national average. Yesterday’s monthly report shows that Wisconsin lost another 5,000 private sector jobs from February to March. Walker famously ran for governor in 2010 on a promise to create 250,000 new private sector jobs in his first term; nearly four months into his second term he’s just more than halfway there.

With the jobs picture continually dismal in Wisconsin under Walker, and his anti-middle class policies getting a closer examination as he elevates his national profile, support for Walker among Wisconsinites is plummeting.

The Marquette University poll released yesterday shows that 56 percent of Wisconsinites disapprove of Walker’s job performance, compared to just 41 percent who approve – a “significant drop” according to the pollster, who noted that Walker’s approval was at 49 percent back in October. The MU poll, conducted as legislators around the state have been holding listening sessions on the state budget, also showed that a majority of Wisconsinites believe the state is headed in the wrong direction and is lagging other states in job creation. A plurality of voters says the state budget – which currently has a $2 billion deficit -- has gotten worse in the last few years.

Other key findings in the MU poll include:

  • 78 percent of Wisconsinites oppose Walker’s proposed cuts to K-12 education and a majority expose his statewide expansion of the unaccountable voucher program;
  • 70 percent of Wisconsinites oppose Walker’s proposed $300 million cut to the University of Wisconsin System;
  • A majority of Wisconsinites prioritize fully funding K-12 schools over property tax cuts.

“Scott Walker might not care what’s happening back in Wisconsin as he campaigns for president all around the country, but Wisconsin voters are learning the harsh reality of what his anti-worker, anti-family agenda has done to our middle class economy,” Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Mike Tate said Friday. “His radical ideology is tainting the entire GOP brand in Wisconsin and jobs and opportunity for middle class families will only diminish further if Walker’s ‘Iowa Caucus Budget’ passes. Instead of using Wisconsin as a laboratory for failed conservative policies as he runs for president, Scott Walker needs to put Wisconsin families first.”