Walker’s repeated gaffs invalidate credibility

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons | Herschel Walker, a former running back at the University of Georgia who won the Heisman Trophy in 1982, is now running as a Republican for the U.S. Senate seat in Georgia.

Russell Macias | Staff Writer

Oct. 13, 2022

The 2022 midterm elections are less than a month away, with highly contested races for U.S. Senate seats across the nation. Arguably the most seismic race is taking place in Georgia, where incumbent Democrat Raphael Warnock takes on challenging Republican Herschel Walker, a former Heisman Trophy-winning running back at the University of Georgia.

Georgia, a state that has turned purple in recent years, has the potential to swing control of the Senate back to the Republicans.

A scandal rocked Walker’s campaign last week when it was revealed that, in 2009, he allegedly paid for an abortion for his then-girlfriend. This could be damaging to Walker’s campaign, especially given the campaign’s emphasis on a pro-life platform. There is evidence to suggest that Walker is hypocritical.

This controversy is not the first for Walker, and it might not be the last. Examples include his alleged denial of three of his four children, spreading falsehoods throughout the Covid-19 pandemic and his denial of evolution.

Walker and Warnock will debate for the first time Friday. Ahead of the debate, Walker said, “I’m this country boy, you know. I’m not that smart. And he’s a preacher. He’s a smart man, wears these nice suits. So he is going to show up and embarrass me at the debate Oct. 14, and I’m just waiting to show up, and I’m going to do my best.”

It’s clear that Walker is not competent to hold public office. Does that matter, though? The Republican Party rallies behind him and funnels money to him.

That’s just what the conservative movement has become today—a soulless, morally corrupt group that strips away rights from people. It’s a party that feasts on disinformation, while pandering to fear-mongering. The party’s members have also engulfed the country in social unrest by playing into unprovoked anxieties that tend to center around minorities.

This, of course, is not to say that Democrats are without flaws. But, the flaws in the Democratic Party mostly don’t involve issues related to blatant racism, homophobia and xenophobia.

This election cycle, we’re seeing just how far the Republican Party is willing to go to win elections, putting up celebrities such as Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania, as well as Walker. They continue to drum up their perceived “illegitimacy” of the 2020 presidential election. Coincidentally, Walker appeared on television in Atlanta earlier in the campaign and said that he’s never heard former president Donald Trump say that he thought the election was stolen.

At this point, it’s clear that Walker is both a hypocrite and, in his words, “not that smart.” So then, what is it that draws voters to him?

Walker’s main appeal seems to be his popularity. In addition to winning the Heisman Trophy in 1982, Walker helped guide the Georgia Bulldogs to a college football national championship in 1980. He is considered one of the greatest college football players of all time, and this contributes to his cult-like following in Georgia, where football comes before almost all things, especially in the Southeastern Conference (SEC).

In a purple state where a popular sports figure entered the race, it seemed like a guarantee that Walker would have a good shot to win.

But between his blunders, harsh views and bold-faced lies, Walker has become one of Georgia’s most-divisive people.

Walker should be considered unelectable, but he’s not campaigning in a state like Hawaii or Illinois.

He’s in Georgia, where he made his name, and the effects of that are keeping his political hopes alive. This is aided by the support from Trump, the Republicans’ predominant voice.

There are enough factors at play that, despite all of the clear signs of Walker’s ineptitude, a win remains a realistic possibility.