Former President Barack Obama took aim at Georgia Republican Senate hopeful Herschel Walker on Friday at a rally with Democrat incumbent Sen. Raphael Warnock, leveling a vicious attack on the former NFL standout, as The Hill reports.
The campaign stop was one of several Obama is making in the last days before the pivotal midterm elections, lending his perceived star power to a handful of candidates locked in especially close races.
Obama lets loose
One of the former president’s primary criticisms of Walker appeared to be that he has not held prior political office, suggesting that the candidate’s background is poor preparation for life as a legislator.
“Herschel Walker was a heck of a football player…one of the best running backs of all time,” Obama began, before asking the crowd, “Does that make him the best person to represent you in the United States Senate?”
Obama’s critique of Walker’s past did not stop there, with the former commander in chief declaring, “there is very little evidence that he’s taken any interest, bothered to learn anything about, or displayed any kind of information towards public service, or volunteer work, or helping people in any way. At least we don’t really know about it. And that does make you suspect.”
Taking the opportunity for a not-so-subtle dig at the internationally famous media personality and real estate baron who succeeded him in the Oval Office, Obama characterized Walker as “a celebrity who wants to be a politician” further musing, “and we’ve seen how that goes.”
Walker’s previous claims of having worked within the ranks of law enforcement also drew mockery from Obama, who asked rally attendees, according to the Washington Examiner, “Who will fight to keep you and your family safe? The Republican politicians who want to flood our streets with more guns?… Is it somebody who carries around a phony badge and says he’s in law enforcement, like he’s a kid playing cops and robbers?”
Walker fires back
As Fox News reports, Walker did not let Obama’s jabs go unanswered, telling the Atlanta Journal Constitution that the former president’s comments missed the mark by a wide margin.
“President Obama was here last night. He said I’m a celebrity. He got that one wrong, didn’t he? I’m not a celebrity, I’m a warrior for God,” Walker stated.
“He got something else wrong, too. Remember two years ago he told us to vote for Joe Biden, didn’t he? He got that one wrong, did he not? He’s lost twice to Georgia already, hasn’t he, so I think he probably needs to sit this one out,” the Republican hopeful added.
Asserting that Obama is behind the wrong man in the Georgia race, Walker said, “I’m sorry to tell former President Obama, I’m sorry, I’m gonna pray for him. I’m gonna pray for him because he needs some help. He needs some help because he got with the wrong horse.”
While Walker’s campaign has been fraught with its share of controversies and allegations of scandals concerning his personal life, the race remains extraordinarily tight, and whether the Democrats’ decision to unleash Obama’s derisive rhetoric on the Peach State in the waning days of the contest proves successful in the end, only time will tell.