Georgia Republicans React to Herschel Walker Dodging Debates: “What Is He Hiding and What Is He Afraid Of?”

April 7, 2022

Herschel Walker is once again facing criticism from Georgia Republicans, conservative commentators, and GOP activists alike as the Trump-tapped candidate refuses to participate in Saturday’s GOP primary debate — or any Republican debate after that. Walker’s “refus[al] to face voters” comes amid a barrage of reports about his repeated lies and questionable record — while Republicans wonder aloud “what is he hiding” and “what is he afraid of?” 

See what Georgia conservative voters, activists, commentators, and primary rivals are saying about Walker’s debate-dodging debacle:

Conservative commentators call Walker’s no-show campaign a “disservice to the voters of Georgia,” while others say Walker’s refusal to debate should “disqualify [him] from running as a Republican.”

  • Not debating should “disqualify [Walker] from running as a Republican”: Conservative radio host Todd Starnes says Walker’s refusal to debate should “disqualify [him] from running as a Republican.” Just days after interviewing Walker on his show, Starnes said that “Herschel has the name recognition, but if Herschel Walker does not want to debate the other candidates, I got a problem with that. And quite frankly, if you refuse to debate in a Republican primary, if you refuse to debate, that should disqualify you from running as a Republican.”
  • “Really doing a disservice to the voters of Georgia.” Radio host Beth Beskin criticized Walker for hiding from voters, saying “it’s really doing a disservice to the voters of Georgia if they can’t really question Herschel Walker.” WMLB Producer Derek Clark echoed the sentiment, adding that if Walker “doesn’t want to show up, he has something to hide.” 
  • “Refus[ing] to even have a debate.” Conservative radio host Erick Erickson is worried about Walker “refus[ing] to even have a debate” as bad story after bad story pile up. “I’m worried about Herschel Walker in Georgia.…And he refuses to answer those questions honestly. He refuses to even have a debate.”

“What is he hiding and what is he afraid of?”: “Nervousness in the grassroots” is growing as Republicans fret about Walker’s debate dodging amid report after report about his lies and shady record: “Look at the press…this is why [Walker] needs to debate.” Meanwhile, local GOP activists, already frustrated with Walker’s too little there” campaign, are calling him out for skipping debates: 

  • The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Patricia Murphy reports she’s hearing concerns about Walker rippling through local conservatives: “Donald Trump and David Perdue supporters didn’t like that Herschel Walker is not talking to the press and is not planning to do debates with the GOP. And that came back to me as saying, ‘what is he hiding and what is he afraid of?’”
  • And for the “first [time] in Georgia,” the Rabun County GOP passed a no-confidence resolution that slammed Walker for refusing to debate his GOP opponents, saying: “No coach would send an untested football player into the state championship who refused to practice, has no record of performance in debates.”


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