It seems that Georgia is on everyone’s mind these days. It’s been a little over two weeks since the midterm elections were held and while most races have been called, there’s a runoff down in Georgia!
Incumbent Senator, Reverand Raphael Warnock is in a battle for his seat, with Heisman winner, Hershel Walker and it’s been one heck of a time watching this!
From abortion scandals to werewolves, this race has had its share of crazy! This article will cover it all, from who these two candidates are to why there’s a runoff in the first place and finally, why it’s so important.
Let’s get into it!
Georgia Senate Runoff – Warnock vs. Walker
Earlier this month, the 2022 Midterm Elections were held, I wrote an article explaining them here. While several races had winners declared that night, others lasted days and others are still up in the air, like in Georgia!
In Georgia, when no candidate receives a majority of the votes in the general election, a runoff is held.
In this instance, while Warnock received 37,000 more votes than Walker, he failed to get the “majority” of votes, and therefore we have to have another election; a runoff.
Wasn’t Raphael Warnock just elected?
If you’re wondering to yourself, “Didn’t we just elect Warnock to the Senate, and don’t Senators serve six-year terms?”
You’d be right on both counts. Yes, Raphael Warnock was elected back in a special election in 2020 between him and then Senator Kelly Loeffler.
Here’s a quick rundown on that, long-time Senator Republican Johnny Isakson resigned his seat, due to health reasons in 2019.
Georgia Governor, Brian Kemp, who just won his re-election bid, appointed Kelly Loeffler as an interim replacement for Senator Isakson.
This would set the stage for the special election, where once again, Raphael Warnock did not receive the majority of the vote and a runoff was held and he eked out a win.
Why is Raphel Warnock up for re-election so soon?
Senators serve six-year staggered terms. However, who is up for election within their terms is determined by their “class”.
There are three classes in the U.S. Senate as per the U.S. Constitution. Senator Isakson’s seat was a “class III” seat.
So, if he hadn’t resigned, he would have been up for re-election, provided he wanted to run, and that’s why Warnock’s in this situation. If he wins, he’ll serve a full term of six years.
Who is Raphel Warnock?
He would serve as a senior Pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, where Dr. Martin Luther King served as well.
While in Congress he serves on the Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee; Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee; Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, as well as the Special Committee on Aging and the Joint Economic Committee.
He’s also sponsored bills such as the Affordable Insulin Now Act and Capping Drug Costs for Seniors Act among several others. He’s no slouch!
Who is Herschel Walker?
Hershel Walker was born and raised in Georgia and is a former professional Football player, he played for both the NFL and the now-defunct USFL or United States Football League.
While he played in the USFL, he played for the New Jersey Generals, a team that would be later sold to Donald Trump.
After that stint, he would play in the NFL for various teams before he finally retired.
Finally, while I said that he was raised in Georgia, and he was, his current residence is something to look at but we’ll get into that in a bit.
Herschel Walker’s Controversies
While no person is ever squeaky clean, the things that have come out about Herschel Walker have been both eye-opening as well as confusing, I’ll get into a few of them below.
Abortion is a big issue right now in the country and was certainly a major factor with voters at the polls this cycle. Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.
While this decision didn’t outright outlaw abortions, it sent the issue back to the individual states and as you can imagine, blue states have protected that right and in some cases expanded care, while the Red States have all but outlawed it completely.
The Republican party line currently is “pro-life”, with some wiggle room, depending on the person and state to “life of the mother situations” and incest and so on but generally speaking Republicans are very much in the anti-abortion camp.
Which has proven to be a problem for Hershel because allegedly he “urged” a woman he had a relationship with back in 2009 to have an abortion.
The woman, who did not want to be identified, stated that she had receipts from the clinic and a bank deposit receipt for a personal check amount that Walker allegedly sent to her, along with a get-well card. You can that Daily Beast story here.
To make matters worse for Walker, another woman also came forward making similar allegations. Stating that during their relationship in the ’90s, she became pregnant by Walker.
After discussing the matter, Walker, allegedly, drove her to the clinic to get an abortion.
The woman was unable to go through with the procedure but after she told that to Walker, he allegedly drove her back the next day to get the procedure. She would have the abortion while he waited in the car.
While neither woman has come forward with their identity, they both had similar reasons for coming out with their stories.
Saying that the “hypocrisy” of his stance on Abortion was enough to make them want to speak out.
Yes, that header is right, werewolves. Mythical creatures that come out every full moon.
Surely, with all of the popular movies and tv shows that have come out over the past decade or so, you know about werewolves.
Earlier this month, while at a campaign stop in Mcdonough, Georgia, Mr. Walker went into this weird, rambly speech about how he wanted to be a Werewolf as opposed to a Vampire because “he’d just found out” that Werewolves could, in fact, kill a Vampire!
I didn’t catch the speech live, I saw it after the fact and I started listening to it about halfway through, you can see that trainwreck here, and he started to describe a scene from the 1985 movie Fright Night!
I stood there, my mouth dropped open, I’ve seen that movie dozens of times and he’s talking about it in a speech?! When I finally caught the whole video, I was still gobsmacked.
I get the “point” that he was trying to make but it was a long, convoluted, rambly, and just all-around weird speech.
Plus, it’s not a “stupid” movie Hershel! It’s 80’s B movie greatness! You can see the trailer here.
Where does Hershel Walker live?
In past speeches, Hershel Walker has flip-flopped on where he calls home. In earlier speeches, he said that he decided to run for office in Georgia from his home in Texas.
However, he later changed that tune and stated that he’s “always” lived in Georgia. So, which is it, and does it matter?
This has caused an uproar among Democrats and even some Republicans, it’s “not right” and so on but is it illegal? Not really.
According to CNN, it looks like Mr. Walker does have a primary residence in the Dallas, TX area and is claiming it as such for a potential tax break. However, he moved to Georgia to run for the Senate.
The constitution says that a person only has to be an inhabitant upon election. Which, at this point, Mr. Walker would be.
So, legally speaking, he’s in the clear, minus the tax issue but as for running for office in Georgia, he’s fine.
Where he will find himself culpable is of being a Carpetbagger, a politician that takes up residence in an area to run for office, while not having any close ties to the area.
Illegal? No, not at all but it’s sleazy. We’re supposed to elect these men and women into the office to Represent local residents at the federal level.
They’re supposed to go to congress and “fight” for whatever the specific needs are for the residents of their locality.
How can a person do that, if they’re not from the area? How would Hershel know what the locals need and want if he technically isn’t one?
What’s at stake for the Georgia Senate Race 2022?
As you may know by now, the Democrats are going to hold onto the majority in the Senate. Even if Hershel Walker were to win, Vice President, Kamala Harris, would be the tie-breaking vote if needed.
Effectively, giving Democrats the majority. However, if Raphel Warnock can win, they’ll have a 51 – 49 seat advantage.
Now, with that being said, it’s important to note that that’s not entirely true, two senate seats are held by independents that currently caucus with Democrats. Which is a fancy way to say they vote with them.
So, they’re not Democrats but they usually vote “left”, so they get counted with the Democratic party.
Going back to Warnock, if he wins and he’s the 51st senator, it will make pushing policy through much easier for the Democrats. It’ll give them a little breathing room.
If Walker wins, yes, VP Harris ensures the majority for the Democrats but there’s a lot of power to be had with a tight margin like that.
The Republicans could leverage that to stall or completely kill policy as they hold the line for 2024.
What the Georgia Runoff means for 2024
The Presidency won’t be the only hot ticket in town in 2024. Another round of senate seats will go up for election/re-election, remember, staggered terms.
So, with a Walker win, the Republicans could just “stall” on policies until 2024 and hope for seats to be flipped.
In other words, hoping to beat incumbent Democrats, so Republican winners can shift the balance of power.
Rounding this out
The 2022 Georgia Senate Runoff between Raphael Warnock and Hershel Walker is on December 6th, just a few days away.
And while it might not seem important it is, it will determine control of the Senate for the next two years for certain and possibly have an effect four years down the road!
With Abortion rights in peril, healthcare in calamity, and inflation rising, we need to pay attention to who we’re sending the hill, and a man who now wants to be a werewolf, might not be the best choice.
Either way, it’s up to the people of Georgia but hold on to your butts because next Tuesday’s gonna be a wild night!
Featured Image – Senator Raphael Warnock at the Delta Flight Museum mass vaccination site. Taken on March 8, 2021. Licensed under CC BY 2.0.