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The Latest: Evers spokeswoman: GOP needs to focus on issues

November 16, 2018
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Addressing members of the media for the first time after failing to win re-election in the 2018 race, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker addresses members of the media from his office in Madison, Wis., Thursday, Nov. 15, 2018. (John Hart/Wisconsin State Journal via AP)

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Latest on Gov. Scott Walker comments (all times local):

6 p.m.

A spokeswoman for Wisconsin Gov.-elect Tony Evers says it’s time Republicans “got serious” about working with the incoming Democratic governor on the state’s issues.

Evers spokeswoman Britt Cudaback reacted Thursday after GOP Gov. Scott Walker said he’s open to Republican proposals for a lame-duck legislative session that would limit the governor’s powers before Evers takes office. Evers narrowly defeated Walker last week.

In a statement, Cudaback says Evers believes Republicans “should stop any and all attempts to override the will of the people and instead focus on solving the problems of this state.”

Walker promised Thursday that he wouldn’t “retreat” after losing re-election. He says the proposals being discussed seem “pretty reasonable.”

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4:30 p.m.

Gov. Scott Walker says he’s open to changing the date of the 2020 presidential primary so it won’t be on the same date as the April state Supreme Court election.

Walker told reporters Thursday that there’s a “disconnect” between having the presidential primary on the same day as the spring election where a host of local contests are on the ballot.

In 2020, Walker’s appointee to the state Supreme Court Dan Kelly is up for election.

Republicans fear that high Democratic turnout for the presidential primary will make it difficult for Kelly to win.

Walker says he doesn’t know the specifics of what may be proposed, but it’s always been “odd” to him to have a partisan election at the same time as a local one.

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4:20 p.m.

Gov. Scott Walker says his narrow re-election loss to Democrat Tony Evers was not a rejection, but a factor of higher voter turnout going against him.

Walker spoke to reporters Thursday for the first time since losing to Evers by just over 1 point. Turnout was the highest ever for a midterm election in Wisconsin.

Walker notes that he got more votes than in any other time he’s been on the ballot. He says he’s not going to “retreat” and he’s open to Republican proposals for a lame duck legislative session that would limit the governor’s powers before Evers takes office.

Walker says what is being discussed is “pretty reasonable.”

Evers has accused Republicans of trying to cling to power.

Evers takes over as governor on Jan. 7.

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3:30 p.m.

Gov. Scott Walker says in his first comments to reporters since his election defeat that “We’re not going to retreat. The state of Wisconsin is not going to go backwards.”

Walker also said Thursday that he’s open to Republican proposals to move the date of the 2020 presidential primary and change membership of some state boards and commissions.

Walker says he doesn’t know what he plans to do after leaving office in January. He says his record of enacting a host of conservative reforms may have worked against him. He says, “I may have reformed myself out of a job.”

Democrat Tony Evers narrowly defeated Walker.

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12:30 p.m.

Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos has met with Gov. Scott Walker to discuss Republican plans to limit powers of the governor’s office before Democrat Tony Evers takes office.

Vos and Assembly Majority Leader Jim Steineke met with Walker in his Capitol office on Thursday.

Vos was tightlipped after the meeting, telling The Associated Press he did not want to speak for the governor.

But Vos says they discussed ideas that have been reported publicly and “hopefully he’ll be generally supportive of those.”

Vos and Republican Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald have talked about limiting the rule-making power of the governor, changing members of boards and commissions the governor can appoint and strengthening the voter photo ID law.

Evers has accused Republicans of trying to cling to power.

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