Georgia has become a battleground state in the national political scene.

Georgia has become a battleground state over the last few years.

The once solidly conservative state has seen many Democrats make inroads in the “Peach State” like senators Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff.

Despite Democratic gains in Georgia, Republican candidates like 1982 Heisman Trophy winner Herschel Walker hope to turn the state blue again with the help of the Make America Great Again movement led by former President Donald Trump.

Despite having the endorsement of Trump, who remains popular with the Republican base, Walker’s checkered past has come back to cloud his prospects of defeating his incumbent opponent, Sen. Warnock (D-Ga.).

The Associated Press reported, “Republicans risk losing the U.S. Senate race if they nominate Herschel Walker, two of Walker’s rivals said, citing a report by The Associated Press about how police confiscated a gun from the former football great following a domestic dispute 20 years ago.”

Senate candidate and Georgia Agriculture commissioner Gary Black told a group of reporters on Feb. 11, “I’m here today because more shocking pieces of Herschel Walker’s past have been discovered. And I’m deeply concerned that we’re about to forfeit control of the United States Senate again, under our watch, when it could be easily avoided.”

Black, a Republican candidate, believes Walker’s past should disqualify him from the race for Warnock’s seat.

Another Walker opponent in the Republican primary has a similar opinion on the controversy surrounding the former University of Georgia star running back.

Latham Saddler, a former banker and Navy veteran, believes that the Republican Party should nominate a candidate with “a clean record” and not one who could have a steady stream of negative stories.

In a statement, Saddler said, “Herschel cannot win this seat. I am the only candidate in this race who can lead us to victory against the Warnock-Abrams machine and stop Biden’s destructive agenda.”

However, Walker’s spokesperson Mallory Blount dismissed the controversy on Feb. 10.

Referring to her client’s acknowledged mental illness, Blount said, “The very same media who praised Herschel for his transparency nearly two decades ago are now running…stories, stereotyping, attacking, and going so far as to question his diagnosis. It’s shameful and is why people don’t trust the media.”

Based on reports, “The AP reported Thursday that police in Irving, Texas, confiscated a gun from Walker in 2001 following a domestic disturbance because the former football legend talked about having ‘a shoot-out with police.’ Walker’s ex-wife, Cindy Grossman, alleged that she was a repeated target of abuse. She said Walker had violent outbursts and demonstrated ‘physically abusive and threatening behavior.’ Grossman in 2005 sought a protective order after Walker repeatedly voiced a desire to kill her and her boyfriend, according to court records.”

On various interviews and in his book Breaking Free, Walker said he created multiple personalities to handle bullying that he endured during childhood.

Walker said classmates and peers bullied him because of his weight and stutter.

He famously channeled his anger by transforming his overweight frame to a muscular build and becoming one of the most dominant running backs in the amateur ranks.

At a time when freshman did not play much in college, Walker dominated for the Georgia Bulldogs running over older opponents on his way to highlight reel touchdowns.

However, police reports show that his life was much more tumultuous and checkered than he revealed in his book, Breaking Free.

The AP reported, “A former Dallas Cowboys cheerleader told Irving police in 2002 that she believed Walker had been lurking outside her house. The woman said she had a confrontation with him roughly a year earlier, which led to Walker making threatening phone calls, according to a police report. She said Walker later followed her home.”

Ten years ago, Myka Dean told Irving, Texas authorities that Walker told her he would wait outside of her apartment and “blow her head off” after she tried to end their relationship, which she described as “on-off-on-off.”

Over the last 10 years, Walker has not faced any accusations of domestic violence or for making violent threats.

Despite the controversial allegations against Walker, Trump has not altered his support of the former Dallas Cowboys and Minnesota Vikings running back.

Walker has been an unwavering supporter of Trump.

Their relationship goes back to when Walker played for the Trump-owned New Jersey Generals of the United States Football League (USFL).

Many of the Senate’s top Republicans have also backed the Trump-endorsed candidate despite his checkered history and lack of political experience.

Black said, “It’s time for Herschel Walker to enter through the front door, make himself available to the public and have the press do interviews that test your knowledge and skills and answer the many questions that everyone has.”

The Associated Press said that Walker has not granted them an interview despite several requests for an interview.

However, Blount said that Walker has had 92 public events and has conducted 80 interviews since his campaign started in August 2021.

Nevertheless, many media experts and journalists would question whether those interviews were conducted by reporters sympathetic to Walker’s campaign or hard-nosed journalists that ask difficult questions and hold politicians accountable.

Additionally, Walker and a business partner have faced criticism for not repaying $625,000 in loans for a pizza franchise.

Walker and Brandon Scrushy, president of Zoner’s Pizza, Waffles and Wings, had guaranteed the repayment of two loans from Texas banks.

However, to date that debt remains outstanding.

Todd A. Smith
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