Walker backs guns for guardsmen, raises money for AFP

On his fourth presidential campaign visit to Tennessee, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said Wednesday members of the military “absolutely” should be allowed to go armed while on duty at recruiting centers and other military facilities inside the U.S, reports Richard Locker.

“I issued an executive order to allow the National Guard in my state to do exactly that,” Walker told reporters during a campaign stop at a popular restaurant in downtown Nashville. “We have four recruitment centers, and I believe the law and the policy needs to be changed nationally so that our heroes — the men and women who serve us in the military — can be protected at these centers or anywhere else where they’re out in the public.

“Sadly, when this was put in place back in the early 1990s, we had just come off the end of the Cold War and back then, containment … was enough with our enemies. Today with radical Islamic terrorism, they’re targeting our military here and around the world. We need to make sure they are safe and as president, I would make sure those policies reflect that.”

Walker said he called Gov. Bill Haslam last week after the shootings at two military installations in Chattanooga that resulted in the deaths of five servicemen to extend sympathy.

“One of the four Marines was a native of Wisconsin, and so that touched even more for me personally,” he said.

Walker attended back-to-back fundraisers, first for the conservative Americans for Prosperity and then for his presidential campaign, Tuesday night at the sprawling Williamson County estate of Willis Johnson, who founded and ran a California vehicle auction company before buying the former home of country music star Alan Jackson for $28 million outside of Nashville in 2010.

AFP’s Tennessee director, Andy Ogles, attended Walker’s Wednesday morning stop at Puckett’s restaurant, two blocks from the State Capitol. Other prominent Tennessee conservatives who greeted Walker at the restaurant included longtime Eagle Forum Tennessee director and lobbyist Bobbie Patray and state Sens. Mark Green, R-Clarksville, Jack Johnson, R-Franklin, and Mike Bell, R-Riceville. Green is heading Walker’s Tennessee campaign.

Tennessee GOP chairman Ryan Haynes of Knoxville also attended.