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Georgia Senate race: Preacher vs. running back will decide state’s future

The 2020 presidential election turned Georgia into a battleground for the first time in decades when Joe Biden became the first Democratic presidential candidate since Bill Clinton to win the state.

But the Senate races that followed January really shone the spotlight on Georgia when Senators Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock won their respective races.

They became the first two Democrats to win a Georgia Senate race since 2000, when Zell Miller won a special election, and the victories also gave Democrats their shaky 50-50 majority, with Vice President Kamala Harris serving as tiebreaker.

Mr. Warnock defeated former Senator Kelly Loeffler, whom Governor Brian Kemp appointed to finish the term of the late Senator Johnny Isakson, who resigned due to health issues.

He is now seeking a full six-year term. Mr. Warnock is the senior pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr preached and where Martin Luther King Sr was the senior pastor.

Since his election, Mr Warnock has prioritized the reauthorization of the Voting Rights Act, which the Supreme Court weakened in Shelby County vs. Holderand won a major victory when his political proposal to cap insulin at $35 for Medicare beneficiaries was passed into the Cut Inflation Act, the Democrats’ massive health care bill and climate change.

Conversely, Republicans nominated Herschel Walker. A former University of Georgia running back and Heisman Trophy winner, Mr. Walker helped the Bulldogs win a championship. He then joined the United States Football League, where he played for the New Jersey Generals, then owned by future President Donald Trump.

Thereafter, Mr. Walker would play for the Dallas Cowboys, Minnesota Vikings, Philadelphia Eagles and New York Giants. Since retiring, Mr. Walker has become a rare black conservative voice and he has spoken at the 2020 Republican National Convention about his friendship with Mr. Trump.

After the election, Mr Trump floated the idea of ​​Mr Walker running against Mr Warnock. But the election has opened Mr Walker up to scrutiny over allegations of domestic violence against women and his run-ins with law enforcement. Mr. Walker attributed his actions to the diagnosis of dissociative personality disorder.

But he is also being criticized for alleging he worked as a law enforcement officer. Mr. Warnock mentioned both of these things in a debate against Mr. Walker last week.

“One thing I didn’t do, I never pretended to be a policeman,” he said. “I never threatened a shootout with the police.”

In response, Mr Walker pulled out a badge that had been given to him.

Conversely, Mr Walker tried to link Mr Warnock to Mr Biden, who had become unpopular in the state he won.

But several reports in The daily beast later corroborated by The New York Times, The Washington Post and NBC News that Mr. Walker paid for an ex-girlfriend’s abortion, despite opposing abortions, rocked the campaign.

Mr Walker vehemently denied paying for the abortion, but in an interview with NBC News he admitted writing a check to his ex-girlfriend.

Polls showed a tight race between the two candidates. On Monday, an InsiderAdvantage poll showed Mr. Warnock leading Mr. Walker 46% to 44%. The race also has a third candidate in Libertarian Chase Oliver.

But if no candidate wins more than 50% of the votes, MM. Warnock and Walker will race in the second lap.

The non-partisan Cook Political Report calls the race a “heads or tails”.

The Independent Gt

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