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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

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November 22nd, 2013
05:53 PM ET

Gov. Walker answers critics calling him a hypocrite on Obamacare

(CNN) - Governor Scott Walker, R-Wisconsin, has been outspoken about the Affordable Care Act recently, saying he does not care for it.

But back in Wisconsin, Walker is trying to implement his own health care reform – Badger Care. One of the ways Walker makes Badger Care work, is by having 80,000 people currently on Medicaid go into Obamacare.

Critics say he is trying to have it both ways, and that Walker can't be against Obamacare while using it.

"That's just not accurate," said Walker. "I fought this every step of the way, ran against it twice, empowered my attorney general to join the federal lawsuit, did not take the state exchange, deferred to the federal exchange, and didn't take the Medicaid expansion."

"For everybody living above poverty, we’re going to transition them into the marketplace which includes a federal exchange option for those at the lower end of the income," Walker said of his plan.

For the first time in Wisconsin's history "everyone living in poverty will now be covered under Medicaid," said Walker."If there's an alternative in the future, which I've advocated for, that would be a better way of serving the people of my state."

Walker made a name for himself by taking on public employees' unions, and facing down crowds of protesters in the State Capitol three years ago.

The war erupted over Walker's plan to strip away unions' collective bargaining powers. Despite the clamor and intense media coverage, Walker was victorious in the recall election.

Of those that voted to keep Walker in 2011, one in six planned to vote for President Barack Obama later in 2012, "which politically doesn't make a lot of sense," said Walker, author of "Unintimidated: A Governor's Story and a Nation's Challenge."

"To that middle undecided voter, we made the case based on leadership and they were hungry for it," said Walker.

For more of our interview with Gov. Scott Walker, including questions on how he handled the protests, check out the video above.

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