Monday evening, Herschel Walker headlined the Republican National Committee’s Juneteenth celebration and family friendly cookout at the party’s Black American Community Center in College Park. For almost twenty minutes, Walker discussed his reasons why he’s running for the United States Senate, his stance on abortion, and addressed the controversy surrounding his children.

Walker is currently in a tough election battle against Senator Reverend Raphael G. Warnock. In the average of polls according to RealClearPolitics, the two candidates find themselves in a dead heat. In the latest poll conducted by East Carolina University’s Center for Survey Research, the incumbent Warnock and the challenger Walker are tied at 46% among registered voters.

According to the poll, Warnock leads Walker 83% to 7% among Black voters; however, among white voters, Walker leads Warnock by a 65% to 29% margin.

“First of all, I think you’re not telling the truth, because I wouldn’t be tied with him if I had no Black support,” Walker said when asked about the poll. “So I think that is wrong. I’m Black, my family is black and I have a lot of Black family in Georgia. So I think what you’re saying is not correct. But I think what I’m going to do is continue to get out and meet the people, continue to do things like this right here, and show that these policies don’t work for a lot of Black and Brown people.”

Walker said politicians get elected to office, take a seat at the table but don’t do anything. He told the assembled crowd he’d hold politicians accountable.

“And I’m gonna tell you right now, God has prepared me to sit at the table,” Walker said. But I don’t dance or sing for anybody. And I will do something. I will do something because I was one of those kids from Middle Georgia that wasn’t supposed to make it.”

Herschel Walker speaks to reporters at the Republican National Committee Black Recruitment Center on Monday, June 20, 2022 in College Park, Ga. (Photo: Itoro N. Umontuen/The Atlanta Voice)

Walker also supports a total ban of abortion under any circumstance. During his speech, Walker said mostly white people have been protesting the leaked decision that could strike down Roe. v Wade by Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito. 

“No excuse. I believe in life. I want to go into what it includes, but I believe in life,” Walker said. 

According to a 2019 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, non-Hispanic White women and non-Hispanic Black women accounted for the largest percentages of all abortions 33.4% and 38.4%, respectively.

Non-Hispanic White women had the lowest abortion rate (6.6 abortions per 1,000 women) and ratio (117 abortions per 1,000 live births). Meanwhile, non-Hispanic Black women had the highest abortion rate (23.8 abortions per 1,000 women) and ratio (386 abortions per 1,000 live births).

Supporters that seek to reaffirm Roe, are fighting for reproductive justice. Reproductive justice is defined as the human right to maintain personal bodily autonomy, have children, not have children, and possess the right to care for the living children in safe and sustainable communities. 

According to a study conducted by the University of Colorado, banning abortion nationwide would lead to a 21% increase in the number of pregnancy-related deaths overall and a 33% increase among Black women, a people group that has long-since struggled with higher-than-normal maternal mortality rates. However, the right to life under any circumstance remains a non-negotiable talking point among Republicans. 

“But do y’all know most African American babies are killed during abortion?”, Walker said. “So why aren’t the Democrats not telling us?”

During the press conference, Walker was asked if he believed Senator Warnock violated the Chrisitan faith by running for public office while currently serving as a pastor.

Walker referenced Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream Speech” while criticizing Warnock and his stances on abortion and race. 

“The church the guy is in, all he talks about is the color of your skin,” Walker said. “And then the 10 commandments says ‘Thou shalt not kill’ and he talks about abortion. So, I think people need to ask that question and see where they’re going.”

Herschel Walker takes a photo with his supporters at the Republican National Committee Black Recruitment Center on Monday, June 20, 2022 in College Park, Ga. (Photo: Itoro N. Umontuen/The Atlanta Voice)

Walker, 60, explained that God has him running for the Senate because America finds itself in troubled times. While citing gun violence and the baby formula shortage. Walker derided the fight for LGBTQ+ rights, “We’re debating about ‘what is a woman?’”

However, Walker says he has no problem speaking to anyone, saying “Democrat, Republican, Martian or whoever. As long as you’re a citizen of Georgia, I’m going to talk to you. And I want to hear what you got to say.”

Walker addressed the controversy that has brewed over the last week regarding the revelation that he has a 10-year old son, a 13-year old son, and an adult daughter he fathered while attending the University of Georgia, all of whom he’s never discussed prior to running for the United States Senate.

“Well, one of the things that people know is that I support my kids more than anything, I love them to death,” Walker said. “And [if] they call today, I’m running over to see them.” 

Walker threw water on the idea of considering bringing his kids to the campaign trail. 

“You see what’s happening with the Supreme Court justices,” Walker explained. “And right now, things are not safe to have people around because when people disagree with me, they seem to want to hurt you.”

At the end of the day, Herschel Walker wanted the gathering in College Park to leave with the message that he is a man of faith and believes in American exceptionalism. 

“Right now America’s second, third or fourth,” Walker said. “But you know, America leads, I don’t know if the world is doing well. Right now, we’re not the leaders, we don’t see these leaders.”

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Itoro Umontuen currently serves as Managing Editor of The Atlanta Voice. Upon his arrival to the historic publication, he served as their Director of Photography. As a mixed-media journalist, Umontuen...