Election 2022 Geogia Senate

Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla., center, who chairs Republicans’ Senate campaign arm, and Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., join Georgia Republican Senate Candidate Herschel Walker during a campaign stop on Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2022, in Carrollton, Ga. Megan Varner/Associated Press

CARROLLTON, Ga. — Republican Sens. Rick Scott and Tom Cotton on Tuesday delivered a clear message to voters here that they stand with Herschel Walker, despite recent allegations that he paid for a former girlfriend to have an abortion and urged her to have a second one.

Scott, R-Fla., the head of the Senate GOP’s campaign arm, and Cotton, R-Ark., traveled to Georgia to campaign with Walker in the latest display that national Republicans are still strongly backing the former football star in his tight race against Sen. Raphael Warnock, D-Ga. Warnock has been polling ahead of Walker, but Republicans have targeted the state as one of their best opportunities to pick up a Senate seat and gain the majority.

“Herschel Walker will be a leader in the Senate just like he’s been a leader in sports and in business for the state of Georgia,” Cotton said, prompting the crowd to cheer and clap.

“If you want to vote for a man who believes America is a great country, a man who has overcome great adversity, a man who wants to bring the people of Georgia together and a man who believes our best days can be ahead of us,” Scott said. “Well, then you should vote for the next U.S. senator from the great state of Georgia: Herschel Walker.”

Both senators kept their speeches short at the campaign event, dubbed a “Huddle with Herschel,” speaking for a combined nine minutes. They made no mention of the allegations against Walker and instead emphasized that their top priority is defeating Warnock and securing the Senate majority.

“Georgia took a chance on Raphael Warnock two years ago – put him on a little trial run for two years,” Cotton said. “And for two years, Raphael Warnock has been nothing but a rubber stamp for Joe Biden and the Democratic agenda.”


Scott, in his three-minute speech, repeatedly slammed Warnock, saying he’s “working for Joe Biden and the radical Democrats in Washington.” He listed all the issues he feels Warnock and President Biden have failed to address, including the economy, crime and immigration – issues the GOP has largely focused on in their attack on Democrats in campaigns across the country.

Speaking to reporters after the event, Scott said he feels voters will ultimately cast their ballots based on the issues.

“I think what people are going to vote about is how it impacts their family – inflation, crime, parents not being involved in schools and open borders,” Scott said. “That’s what people are gonna vote on.”

More national Republicans will also be making the trip to Georgia to campaign with Walker in the final weeks leading up to the election, Scott said.

Walker and the Republican senators received a loud and excited reception from the large crowd that gathered at the event in the parking lot of a health and wellness shopping center. Before Walker’s speech, one protester, holding a sign that read, “The GOP wants to control you. Don’t be fooled,” was removed from the event. As she was escorted out of the roped-off area for the event, she yelled: “He’s afraid of the truth . . . He’s still a liar,” mentioning allegations about past incidents of violence and the more recent allegations about the abortion.

The allegations have come after Walker has been campaigning as a staunch opponent of abortion, with no exceptions. The Senate candidate has said he supports a national abortion ban.


Walker has repeatedly denied paying for the abortion, and initially insisted that he didn’t know the woman who made the allegations that were first reported by the Daily Beast. The woman later said she was the mother of Walker’s 10-year-old son, and that he had pressured her to get a second abortion but she decided to have the child. Walker has continued to maintain that the allegations are false. A former wife also said that Walker put a gun to her head and threatened to kill her. Walker has said he doesn’t remember the incident and instead pointed to his history of mental illness.

As Walker’s campaign bus pulled up, supporters – some of who brought lawn chairs to sit while they waited for his arrival – crowded toward the stage as George Thorogood’s “Bad to the Bone” played in the background.

The crowd of largely older White supporters chanted his name and cheered him on as “God Bless the USA” by Lee Greenwood played in the background and Walker took the stage with Scott and Cotton.

Walker also did not address the allegations in his nine-minute speech, but did emphasize that he has no plans to back down.

“They’ll do whatever it takes or say whatever they have to say because they want this seat right here. But I don’t think they know that they woke up a bear,” Walker said as his supporters loudly cheered. “I’m a bear. They gotta bring more than that.”

Meanwhile, Walker supporters at the event expressed full-throated support for the Senate candidate, largely dismissing the allegations against him.


“I don’t know of any living person who doesn’t have a past. I’ve got one. My wife’s got one, too. That’s just the way it is,” said Willie Chappell, a retiree who attended the event with his wife. “We should get to the point where we can consider the measure of a person to be based on the changes they’ve made in their lives for the better.”

In the crowd, one married couple held up signs that said, “Please vote pro-life” and “Without life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness aren’t possible. Vote pro-life.” After the event, the couple, Duane and Karen, shared that they specifically brought out the signs to show they support Walker regardless of the accusations that have come out against him. Karen, 58, who declined to share her last name, shared that she doesn’t believe the allegations and if any of it is true “we have a God who can redeem us.”

“So, all those claims that they were showing are from years ago. He’s redeemed himself to Christ,” said Duane, 64, who works in sales and also declined to share his last name. “I mean, if Warnock is such a reverend, how come he doesn’t believe in redemption?”

In his remarks, Walker also mentioned redemption – a word he has long used to discuss his journey. In recent days, he’s slammed Warnock by arguing the senator doesn’t believe in redemption.

“He’s a minister. Has he ever heard of forgiveness? … Has he ever heard of redemption,” Walker said. “So, it’s time for all of us to stand up. We can’t continue to do this. We gotta get out and vote. We’ve gotta change it.”

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