Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

Help us monitor promises made by Scott Walker

Gov.-elect Scott Walker, at his election-night victory party
Gov.-elect Scott Walker, at his election-night victory party

Let's see, there's the Truth-O-Meter. And the Flip-O-Meter.

Yes, here at PolitiFact Wisconsin we like our meters.

So, we're in the process of building a new one — and we need your help.

This one, which will launch Jan. 2, 2011, will monitor promises made by Governor-elect Scott Walker during the campaign and how well he is doing in fulfilling them.

Call it the Walk-O-Meter.

The meter is modeled after the Obameter, which was created by the national PolitiFact site after the 2008 presidential election.

Using measurements of In the Works, Stalled, Promise Kept, Promise Broken and Compromise, the national site is keeping track of more than 500 promises President Barack Obama made on the campaign trail.

They will soon be rolling out a meter to follow pledges made by Republican congressional leaders in the course of the 2010 election. And other state sites will begin monitoring promises made by their own governors.

Yes, more meters.

What are we looking for?

Well, for starters, we"re looking for promises that we can measure. We"ll follow the criteria used for the Obameter: "A prospective statement of an action or an outcome that is verifiable.”

Thus, we can't tackle a statement like "we need to do more to create jobs.” But we surely can — and will — track Walker's pledge to create 250,000 new jobs over the course of his four-year term.

We can't do a statement like "we will get things done in Madison.”

But we can — and will — monitor whether Walker is successful in stopping the proposed high-speed rail link between Milwaukee and Madison, as he has promised.

Over the next weeks, we'll continue looking for promises by digging through Walker's web site, news releases, campaign fliers and policy statements, as well as media interviews, speeches, news conferences and debates.

How can you help?

Let us know of promises you think we should monitor (email us at politifact@journalsentinel.com).

We can track down some of the information, but we need to know when and where the promise was made, so include a link if you can.

Of course, we'll also take suggestions for statements from public figures we should check, or cases where elected officials may have changed their position.