From the start, Republican leaders knew they were taking a risk to quickly rally behind Georgia’s Herschel Walker Senate bid.
Walker never ran for any office and there were already well-known stories about his troubled past in the airwaves.
But Walker was a former football star – he won the Heisman Trophy in 1982 – and had strong support from former President Donald Trump. Given that, it would have been very difficult for Walker to stop in a GOP primary. So the likes of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell joined the Walker campaign.
It was to do that always a bet And in the last 24 hours, it looks more and more like it was a bad bet.
The Daily Beast reported Monday night that Walker paid for a woman’s abortion after the two fathered a child while they were dating in 2009.
The report said the woman, who The Daily Beast asked to remain anonymous due to privacy concerns, supported the claims with a $575 receipt from the abortion clinic, a bank deposit slip, and an image of a personal check signed for $700. Walker, and a “well done” card belonged to Walker, who was married at the time. The Daily Beast also published a photo of the card, which the outlet said was Walker’s signature.
CNN has not independently verified the allegations reported by the Daily Beast.
Walker said in a statement: “This is an outright lie, which I deny in the strongest possible terms.” He also said Tuesday morning that he planned to sue the Daily Beast for what he called “defamatory lies.”
Christian Walker, one of the candidate’s sons, criticized his father on Twitter Monday night. “I don’t care if someone has a bad past and is held accountable,” wrote Christian Walker. “But how DARE YOU LIE TO AN ORGANIZATION AND act as if you are a “moral, Christian, upright man”.
Walker, responding to her son’s posts, tweeted: “I LOVE my son no matter what.”
Taken as a whole, it made for a massive (and incredibly bad) news cycle for Walker, who finds himself in a tight race with Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock in Georgia. It looks like a race some key competitions that will determine control of the Senate in November. Walker has also come out against abortion rights as a candidate.
And while these allegations may be the most serious of the campaign so far, they are far from the first time Walker has been embroiled in controversy. Take into account:
* Three women, including his ex-wife and ex-girlfriend, have accused Walker of making threats against them.
* Walker claimed to be in law enforcement, although there is scant evidence of this fact
* He publicly admitted to fathering three children with women he was not married to.
* He has shown limited knowledge of key issues during the campaign, especially this response to gun violence.
* There are a lot of question marks about the business he’s been involved with.
* Walker suggested that China was taking the United States’ “good air” and pushing back its “bad air.”
Well, it’s a lot.
Despite all the negative stories, Walker has remained within shouting distance of Warnock in the polls. The latest polls from Fox News, CBS/YouGov and Marist College show Warnock with a narrow single-digit lead.
It’s possible, of course, that Walker — like Trump — has an uncanny ability to weather and survive stories that would end other campaigns — that voters still see Walker as a football star and are willing to forgive some of them. his flaws as a candidate.
But those mistakes are legion. And this latest report from the Daily Beast drives home a key point about the race: Republicans have bet big on Walker in a race that could very well decide which party controls the US Senate.