Barack Obama, in Georgia, calls Herschel Walker a ‘celebrity who wants to be a politician’

COLLEGE PARK, GA – Former President Barack Obama has repeatedly taken aim at Georgia Republican Senate nominee Herschel Walker, who is Democratic Sen. Challenging Raphael Warnock in a key battleground State Senate showdown.

The former president, who returned to the campaign trail on behalf of fellow Democrats with just a week and a half left until Election Day, criticized Walker, the former college and pro football star and first-time candidate, as “a celebrity to who wants to be a politician.”

Obama, who remains the most popular person in the Democratic Party nearly six years after leaving the White House, is trying to perform some last-minute political magic as Democrats desperately try to hold on to their razor-thin congressional majorities in the midterm elections. The former president is leading rallies in five states holding key Senate and gubernatorial races.

“I’m here to ask you to vote,” the former president told about 7,000 people packed into an arena, walking away from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

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Former President Barack Obama, center, stands with Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams and U.S. Senate candidate Sen.  Raphael Warnock D-Ga., during a campaign rally Friday, Oct. 28, 2022, in College Park, Ga.  (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Former President Barack Obama, center, stands with Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams and U.S. Senate candidate Sen. Raphael Warnock D-Ga., during a campaign rally Friday, Oct. 28, 2022, in College Park, Ga. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
(AP)

And referring to the nearly 15,000 people who had already voted during early voting — a midterm record in Georgia — Obama emphasized “you don’t have to wait until November 8 to cast your vote. You can vote right away.”

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The former president was preceded at the podium by Democratic gubernatorial nominee Stacey Abrams, the voting rights champion who is challenging GOP Gov. Brian Kemp in a rematch of their 2018 showdown. Polls show the conservative governor with an upper single-digit lead over Abrams.

And Obama was introduced to the stage by Warnock, the pastor at Atlanta’s Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Martin Luther King Jr. once preached. The latest surveys suggest it is a margin of error race between Warnock and Walker.

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The former president noted that “Herschel Walker was one heck of a football player … one of the greatest running backs of all time.”

“Does that make him the best person to represent you in the United States Senate?” Obama asked the crowd, who answered a resounding “no.”

Republican Senate nominee Herschel Walker of Georgia holds a campaign rally on October 27, 2022 in Cumming, Georgia.

Republican Senate nominee Herschel Walker of Georgia holds a campaign rally on October 27, 2022 in Cumming, Georgia.
(Fox News)

The former president charged that “in the case of Rev. Warnock’s opponent, there is very little evidence that he took any interest, bothered to learn anything about, or any kind of information in respect of public service, or volunteering , or people help in anyway. We really don’t know about it anyway. And it makes you suspect.”

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And referring to both Walker and his close friend, former President Donald Trump — who was best known as a reality TV celebrity and real estate mogul before he turned to politics and succeeded Obama in the White House — Obama argued ” seems to me he’s a celebrity for who wants to be a politician, and we’ve seen how that goes.”

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Obama has pushed back against repeated GOP campaign attacks in recent months claiming Democrats are soft on crime, asking the audience “who will fight to keep you and your family safe?”

He suggested that Warnock was someone “who worked with President Biden to pass the first major gun safety legislation in nearly 30 years,” and slammed Walker as “someone who carries around a fake badge saying he’s in law enforcement.”

Walker has been criticized for over-inflating his law enforcement credentials and was called out during his exceptional debate with Warnock two weeks ago for flashing an honorary police weapon when debate rules prohibited any props.

Home before Obama’s appearance in Georgia, Walker the ex-pres.

At a campaign rally earlier Friday, Walker pointed to Warnock and said “he’s bringing Obama down. Obama doesn’t even live here. So why is he bringing him here to do something for him. Obama doesn’t pay any taxes here. .”

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“Get Obama out of here unless he wants to come here and he can run for Senate too. I’ll beat him too,” Walker boasted.

Former President Barack Obama, right, is greeted by U.S. Senate candidate Raphael Warnock as he takes the stage to speak during a campaign rally, Friday, Oct. 28, 2022, in College Park, Ga.  (AP Photo) /John Bazemore)

Former President Barack Obama, right, is greeted by U.S. Senate candidate Raphael Warnock as he takes the stage to speak during a campaign rally, Friday, Oct. 28, 2022, in College Park, Ga. (AP Photo) /John Bazemore)
(AP)

After his stop in Georgia, Obama is campaigning in the Midwestern swing states of Michigan and Wisconsin on Saturday. The former two-term president heads to the purple state of Nevada on Tuesday and the key northeastern battleground of Pennsylvania on Nov. 5. Four of the states are holding high-stakes Senate elections that are likely to determine which party will control the chamber’s majority going forward, and four are holding high-profile gubernatorial contests.

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With Democrats facing historic headwinds — the party that wins the White House traditionally suffers major setbacks in subsequent midterm elections — and a rough political climate fueled by record inflation, rising crime and a border crisis highlighted by President Biden ‘s recovering but still submerged approval ratings, Obama’s mission is to try to energize the party’s base.

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