POLITICS
02/11/2015 02:36 pm ET Updated Feb 11, 2015

Scott Walker Dodges Question On Whether He Believes In Evolution

LONDON -- Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) on Wednesday dodged a question about whether he believes in evolution.

Speaking at the Chatham House foreign policy think tank London, Walker was asked: "Are you comfortable with the idea of evolution? Do you believe in it?"

"For me, I am going to punt on that one as well," he said. "That's a question politicians shouldn't be involved in one way or another. I am going to leave that up to you. I'm here to talk about trade, not to pontificate about evolution."

Walker was officially in the United Kingdom to promote trade and investment. He added when pressed: "I love the evolution of trade in Wisconsin."

The governor also repeatedly dodged questions about United States foreign policy, citing respect for President Barack Obama. He said American politicians should not criticize a sitting president while abroad.

"Being old fashioned, and having respect for the president, I just don't think you talk about foreign policy when you are on foreign soil," he said.

Walker also alluded to the expectation back in the United States that he would run for president, noting the media had described him as "bland" as a prospective candidate. "I'd rather be bland than stupid, or ignorant, or moronic," he said.

Walker isn't the only would-be White House hopeful to dodge the issue. Last year, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) declined three times to answer the same question. "The reality is I'm not an evolutionary biologist," he explained.

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R), who has also made moves toward a 2016 run, danced around the matter while on the presidential trail in 2011, calling evolution as "a theory that's out there" and one that's "got some gaps in it." When broached with the subject in May 2011, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) told reporters "that's none of your business."

In response to Walker's comments, a spokesperson for the Democratic National Committee said: "Let’s recap - today in London, Scott Walker traveled to a foreign policy think tank to refuse to discuss foreign policy, dodged a straightforward question on evolution, and failed to explain away the budget fiasco he left behind in Wisconsin.

"For someone who went to London to build his street cred as a serious leader all Walker showed today was the same ducking and dodging Wisconsinites know all too well and that we’ve come to expect from the 2016 GOP field, whose policy positions are just too divisive to share. Would’ve been a lot simpler to just stay home."

During his visit to London, Walker met David Cameron and watched him debate Labour leader Ed Miliband in the raucous weekly prime minister's question time session in parliament. He also visited the grave of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

In recent weeks Chris Christie and Bobby Jindal, both potential Republican presidential candidates, have also passed through the British capital. And like Mitt Romney before them, both got themselves into hot water.

Christie caused controversy with comments about vaccinations. And Jindal was criticised over claims there were "no-go zones" in London where non-Muslims were not welcome.

UPDATE: Walker addressed the matter on Twitter.

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