Meet Mark Walker. Walker is a Baptist pastor running for North Carolina's open 6th Congressional District, a dark red piece of turf carefully sutured together by Walker's fellow Republicans in the legislature in order to deny Democrats any chance at it. It's a story you've heard before.
Only this time, things are a bit different. For one, Democrats have recruited a cut-above candidate in former UNC administrator Laura Fjeld, who's raised a decent $524,000 to date. For another, Walker is very much not the guy the GOP wanted. In the primary, he beat out the establishment choice (the son of the state Senate president, no less), and as you're about to see, it's very easy to understand why mainstream Republicans would prefer to have nothing to do with him.
Walker is what someone like Charlie Cook would politely call an "exotic" candidate—or what we'd describe around here as "stark raving nuts." And in a Republican Party filled with maniacs of all varieties, Walker still manages to stand out. Here he is at a candidate forum in June (the video is embedded above), declaring that he'd love the opportunity to impeach President Obama:
Questioner: If you are given the chance, would you vote to impeach Obama?And if Obama "decides not to leave," as the moderator put it, then Walker has a Plan B:
Walker: If I was given a chance to impeach Obama ... yes, I would.
Moderator: I hope you are working on a plan in case Barack decides not to leave.
Walker: Yeah, yeah. And I don't think that's out of the question. I think he's gotten pretty comfortable up there spending all of those billions of dollars on vacations for he and his family. So, yeah.
Moderator: All he's got to do is declare a little martial law and what are you going to do with it?
Walker: It's what Norris was talking about a little bit earlier, Sharia law. I mean, yeah, he's—and martial law both. I'm not leaving until—I don't want to sound too cowboyish there, but yeah, I would stand up to that. And I think we still have a country that if he tried to pull that crap, it'd get real nasty real quick.
Please read below the fold for Walker's big plan.
Moderator: You may tell them your plans for court-martialing the commander-in-chief.So to recap: Walker would like to impeach Obama (for what high crimes, we don't even know), and on top of that, he's convinced that the president won't depart the White House when his term is up because he enjoys spending "billions of dollars" on family vacations. To secure this dystopian future of an endless trip to Disney World for himself, Obama will declare martial law—and Sharia law, too!—though patriots like Walker will ensure that things "get real nasty real quick." If we're lucky, it'll end with a mere court-martial of the president. If we're lucky.
Walker: Alright. I think the question was would I sign something. I don't have a piece of legislation right now, quite yet, to do so. But if it's something that comes across, I'm on record of signing.
This, folks, is your modern Republican Party. Walker is the kind of crazy-uncle candidate that the John Boehners of the world are desperate to keep locked in the attic. But tea party anger has burst into flames in more corners of the country than the GOP's beleaguered fire department can possibly contain.
Yet is Walker's brand of incendiary lunacy enough to turn solidly Republican voters against him and give Fjeld a chance? It might be, but no matter what, guys like him can only hurt the already-damaged Republican brand further. Whatever happens, Democrats can only count themselves fortunate if Walker "decides not to leave" the political scene, too.