The nasty Georgia senatorial contest between incumbent Raphael Warnock and Herschel Walker is mercifully coming to its conclusion in what has turned out to be a bitter, personal, mudslinging battle. It is a race that was Warnock’s to lose, and now it appears that just might happen.
A political novice, Walker has battled his way through a steep learning curve, and multiple allegations meant to destroy his candidacy. However, things began to turn around after the two men clashed in a televised debate. A preacher, Warnock presented as smooth and polished. Walker was just, well, himself. It seems that Walker’s sincere approach might be what Georgia voters want in their next senator. Recent polls began to show Walker catching up, then taking a slight lead, and most recently, beginning to pull away from Warnock in the home stretch.
Polls & Pundits
A Trafalgar/Daily Wire poll released on October 25 showed “Walker on pace to flip the Senate seat…”48.9% to Warnock’s 46.5%. The Wire reported Trafalgar Group founder Robert Cahaly as saying, “After Herschel’s strong debate performance, a well-known group, Landmark released a poll having the race tied. Now we have Walker leading by 2.4%.”
As an interesting side note, it appears Walker is favored to win by the betting community. According to the betting odds website, OddsChecker, “Walker is the runaway betting favorite. Over the last 30 days, 69% of bets have been placed on Walker to win the race, while only 31% have been placed on Warnock.”
The next shoe to drop was a Rasmussen Reports survey showing Walker with 48% and Warnock at 43%. Those five points must have set off alarm bells for the Democrats because on October 26, a second woman came forward saying the Georgia football star impregnated her. This unnamed accuser’s allegations were made public by none other than Gloria Allred.
Attorney and activist Gloria Allred has built a career taking on high-profile cases and advertises herself as “a tireless and successful advocate for victims whose rights have been violated.” A self-described “feminist and warrior,” she is considered to be one of the Democrat’s big guns. Allred’s press conference publicized this latest claim from a woman who says Walker “drove her to a clinic in Dallas, Texas, to have an abortion,” according to a CNBC digital report.
Walker quickly snapped back, “I’m done with this foolishness. I’ve already told people this is a lie, and I’m not going to entertain, continue to carry a lie along. I didn’t kill JFK, either,” he stated during a campaign event on Wednesday.
The phrase “politics of personal destruction” goes back to the days of Robert Bork and Clarence Thomas, though President Bill Clinton made the expression famous. When it was initially introduced, personal destruction politics were quite effective but in recent years it appears to have lost its luster. A similar approach was used on Donald Trump in his first presidential run when NBC released a tape of him talking trash about women. Ultimately the voters didn’t put much stock in it and Trump became the 45th president of the United States.
Run-off or Walk(er)-off?
This begs the question of why voters aren’t automatically swallowing allegations, accusations, and nameless claims as they did when the technique was first employed. Perhaps the electorate is filing it under the no harm, no foul rules and are less swayed by personal trials and tribulations. It could be a matter of personal destruction fatigue or that folks have their own worries and don’t much care what a candidate does in his or her personal life.
Until this week, pollsters were chattering about a run-off in the Walker/Warnock race. This arcane election law forces an additional contest a full month after the original election should neither candidate garner more than 50% of the vote. Georgia is only one of two states (the other being Louisiana) that require this, according to Liberty Nation’s Graham Noble. Under such a system, Allred & Co. could decide to take another bite of the personal destruction apple.
Of course, we can’t know if this latest desperation move by the Warnock campaign will hamper a surging Herschel Walker. It could backfire; Georgians may decide enough is enough and become even more determined to vote for Walker just to spite the allegations and Allreds of the world.
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