Stud Farms, Sex Puppies And Tax Breaks: Herschel Walker's Senate Campaign Can't Get Any Wilder

The U.S. Senate campaign Republican Herschel Walker (R) keeps veering further and further into WTF territory as he tries to unseat Democrat Raphael Warnock for a seat representing Georgia (L).
The U.S. Senate campaign Republican Herschel Walker (R) keeps veering further and further into WTF territory as he tries to unseat Democrat Raphael Warnock for a seat representing Georgia (L).

It’s been a couple weeks since I’ve written about our buddy Herschel Walker. That’s not because his runoff race is now irrelevant; despite Democrats locking up control of the U.S. Senate ahead the Dec. 6 contest against incumbent Sen. Raphael Warnock, it still matters whether the party has the slimmest possible margin or the cushion of an extra vote that a Warnock win would provide. And it’s not that Walker’s provable lies and bizarre behavior are less consequential than they’ve ever been as much as there’s just Walker fatigue. There just ain’t many more ways to say, “this guy’s ridiculously unqualified for public office,” than we’ve already written.

But every once in awhile, ol’ Herschel finds a way to make us care again. Today it’s over the issues of abortion and taxes. But, say, a substantive policy debate over tax policy or him explaining his opposition—as a man whose body it will never effect—to abortion with no exceptions. Instead, today we’re back to discussing one of the two women who have accused Walker of pressuring them into actually aborting pregnancies that they conceived together. The second woman appeared at a press conference yesterday with lawyer Gloria Allred with receipts that she says refutes Walker’s denial that he even knows her, and a challenge: If I’m really lying, say it to my face.

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Of course, we’ve been down this path before, when the first woman who Walker allegedly conceived a pregnancy that he then allegedly gave her money to abort actually produced the check that he wrote in his own handwriting for the whole thing. He doesn’t deny that the check, written to a woman with whom he has another child, was his but he still denies that it was written to pay for an abortion. In this latest instance, the receipts are a little bit more saucy, according to the Daily Beast’s account of yesterday’s presser:

[Jane] Doe also provided what she says is further evidence of her six-year extramarital affair with Walker, including a journal entry, letters, and two pieces of audio—a recorded phone call in which both said they loved each other, and an answering machine tape where a man Allred identified as Walker says, “Ah you, this is your stud farm calling, you big sex puppy, you.”

As gross as that was, it was even more awkward; rather than giving sexy, it sounds like what I imagine one of the brothers from Lambda Lambda Lambda fraternity in the ‘80s jocks vs. geeks comedy Revenge of the Nerds would say practicing pickup lines in the mirror. With g like that, it’s almost a miracle to consider Walker has kids at all. The comedy of it almost obscures the severity: in addition to having the worst flirtation skills in America, and to being a hypocrite for advocating abortions in his personal life while claiming he wants them banned for everyone else, consider that Walker also has a documented history of domestic violence accusations and mental health issues. That matters because among the other claims Jane Doe made yesterday was that Walker threatened to harm himself if she didn’t go through with terminating the pregnancy.

Doe, visibly overcome with emotion and fighting back tears, read aloud from one journal entry.

“Herschel has about gone off the deep end over this whole thing. He thinks that having the baby will keep him in so deep with [his wife’s] family that he’ll never get out. He talks about how it would be fine for the baby, and I, if he would just ‘disappear.’ But I know what that means,” she said. (Walker, who claims to have played Russian roulette more than half-a-dozen times, was hospitalized for carbon monoxide poisoning in 1991, after reportedly falling asleep in his car while it was running in his garage.)

If that’s not bad enough for you, try this: Early on in his campaign there was the issue of whether or not he’d actually be able to represent Georgia because, well, he lived in Texas. Federal election law allows him to run for a seat in another state as long as he moves to that state before taking the oath of office. Walker wouldn’t be the first person to take advantage of this loophole; think how lifelong Arkansas resident and former First Lady Hilary Clinton running for a senate seat representing New York, where she didn’t live until after leaving the White House.

The question is has Walker actually changed his residency yet? Campaign finance filings show that he has at least one house in Georgia, but a new report from CNN shows Walker still claiming a tax exemption in Texas that’s only supposed to apply to a primary residence. Most states offer the so-called homestead tax exemption, which allows homeowners a small break on local taxes for the privilege of living in the jurisdiction.

Walker, CNN reports, took the exemption last year and this year, despite registering to vote in Atlanta in 2021, where his wife also voted in 2020. One of the 15 qualifications the state of Georgia looks at in considering whether someone is legally eligible to run for office representing the state is where they take their homestead exemption, CNN notes. For Walker, that would be damn near 800 miles from the Georgia capital.

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