Georgia Republicans’ “Political Trainwreck”: What They’re Saying About Walker’s Campaign

August 25, 2021

The latest developments in the GOP Senate primary are pitting the candidates against each other while Republicans in Georgia and Washington fret over what it means for their chances in 2022. 

The other candidates, who’ve stated they are staying in the race, greeted Herschel Walker’s entrance with a fresh round of attacks

  • Gary Black quickly snarked that he has been a big fan of Walker “since we were in college together, before you moved away,” a dig at the newcomer leaving UGA and then residing in Texas. Earlier this month, Black called on Walker to “move here, pay taxes here, register and vote in some elections and learn what Georgians have on their minds.” 
  • Latham Saddler rebuffed Walker’s announcement with a swipe that “this campaign isn’t about the glories of yesterday.” 
  • Kelvin King “discounted Walker’s potential as someone who could be a leader in government” and said “he was a legend on the football field. But this is not football.”

Meanwhile,, GOP faithful from Georgia to Washington D.C. were quick to express their concern about the former president’s preferred nominee:

  • “…Georgia Republicans are worried about a possible political trainwreck as Walker faces incoming fire in the weeks and months ahead. A Peach State-based Republican strategist who asked to remain anonymous to speak more freely told Fox News last month that “we don’t know what a Herschel Walker candidacy looks like...(Fox News, 8/25/21)
  • “Walker ‘certainly could bring a lot of things to the table,’ Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, a Republican, said in a recent interview. ‘But as others have mentioned, there’s also a lot of questions out there.’” (The Atlanta Voice, 8/24/21)
  • “‘I do not know a single credible Republican strategist in Georgia or Washington who thinks he can be beaten in the primary,’ Erick Erickson, a conservative radio host based out of Atlanta, wrote Wednesday. “I do not know a single credible Republican strategist who thinks he can win the general.” (CNN, 8/24/21)
  • “Though he has the backing of Trump and favorable poll numbers, Republicans close to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell have privately expressed concerns about whether Walker is ready for the intense pressure of a campaign that could decide control of the chamber.” (Politico, 8/24/21)
  • “Some national Republicans have been wary of Walker’s candidacy, though. The first-time candidate comes with potential baggage that could harm his chances in both the primary and general elections, including his Texas residency.” (NPR, 8/24/21)
  • “‘If any Republican in Georgia told you they didn’t have concerns about his candidacy, they’d be lying to you. We all have concerns,’ said Chip Lake, a GOP strategist in the state.” (Roll Call, 8/24/21)
  • “[Walker] must also navigate a thorny reception from the GOP establishment. A number of high-profile Republicans in Georgia and Washington have been critical of Walker, and some have urged him not to run.” (Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 8/24/21)


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