FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 22, 2022
Contact: [email protected]
ICYMI: Reverend Warnock Draws Hundreds in Wrightsville, Herschel Walker’s Hometown
Reverend Warnock: “This race is about competence and character. Those who know Herschel Walker best know he isn’t ready.”
Atlanta, GA — Yesterday, Reverend Warnock continued his “One More Time” runoff tour in Wrightsville, Georgia—Herschel Walker’s hometown—where he encouraged hundreds of supporters to vote on or by December 6th in the runoff election.
- Raphael Warnock barnstormed through Republican Herschel Walker’s hometown on Monday night, telling supporters here that while he admired the football skills of their “favorite son,” they didn’t qualify him to serve in the U.S. Senate
- “That brother could razzle dazzle you on that football field,” the Democratic senator said.
- “But tonight we’re on a different field,” Warnock said. “And the people of Georgia need a true champion.”
- Joining Warnock at the rally was Walker’s former football coach and high school social studies teacher, Curtis Dixon.
- “As a football player, he was big, he was fast, he was strong,” Dixon said of Walker. “None of that’s going to help in the Senate.”
- “He’s not ready,” Dixon said to shouts of approval from the boisterous crowd.
- On the campaign trail, Walker speaks frequently about growing up in Wrightsville, a rural community in east Georgia. His family still lives there, and in the town square, “Run, Herschel, Run” signs adorned shop fronts already decorated for Christmas.
- Johnson County, where Wrightsville is located, went Republican in the midterm election earlier this month. Nearly 74% of voters there backed Walker while about 26% supported Warnock.
- But Monday night’s Warnock rally, which attracted several hundred people to the Doc Kemp School, was designed less to win over voters in the area and more as a dig at Walker.
- One of those who showed up was Joseph Folsome, who said he grew up a few miles away from Walker’s family.
- “He’s out off his league when he comes off the football field,” Folsome said.
- “I love Herschel. I love his family. But one can love a person and not love their ways, and so I hope that he loses in grand fashion, even though he’s my homeboy,” Folsome added.
- Warnock and Walker are locked in a Dec. 6 runoff for a U.S. Senate seat from Georgia after neither cleared the 50% benchmark to win the race outright in the general election earlier this month.
- Walker on Monday campaigned in Milton but made no mention of Warnock’s visit in his hometown.
Watch WJBF Augusta’s Coverage HERE
Reverend Warnock: “I represent all of Georgia. I go to parts of our state that are largely blue, parts of our state that are largely red, because my concerns are bigger than that.”
Nikita Dennis, WJBF: “Raphael Warnock made a stop in Herschel Walker’s hometown of Wrightsville just ahead of runoff elections in December. State and local lawmakers were also there to support the incumbent.”
Rep. Mack Jackson: “Medicaid expansion is important to me. I live in rural Georgia. I’m from Sandersville, Georgia. We have rural hospitals that have been closing and we can’t afford that. We need to expand Medicaid.”
Nikita Dennis, WJBF: “Warnock says he has fought to expand health care, especially for essential workers who can’t afford it. He says he hopes to continue that effort.”
Reverend Warnock: “It’s a drag on our economy. It’s a drag on our health care systems and it particularly devastates our rural areas. We’ve had 10 hospitals to close, all in rural areas.”
Nikita Dennis, WJBF: “He also says he will continue to give credit to Herschel Walker for his well known football career, but as far as his candidacy for Georgia Senator…”
Reverend Warnock: “And the people of Georgia need a true champion. Working families need a champion. Veterans need a champion.”
The Atlanta Voice: ‘He’s not ready:’ Walker’s hometown welcomes opponent
- The auditorium at the now closed Dock Kemp School filled up fast. It was cold outside Monday night and more than 300 Johnson County residents made their way to folding chairs set up around a stage in order to get a good look at the man they are supporting for the U.S. Senate.
- Wrightsville, the hometown of senatorial candidate Herschel Walker, was the latest stop on Senator Reverend Raphael Warnock’s (D-GA) campaign. During his time on stage he made sure to speak about the differences between himself and Walker.
- “This race is about competence and character. You actually have to know stuff to do this job,” Warnock said. “The job of a senator is to write laws and push forward policy. He is neither ready or fit.”
- Wrightsville has a population of 9,160 residents, according to the United States Census and during the most recent midterm election only a small percentage (1,806) voted early, according to data provided by the Secretary of State’s Office. Walker won Johnson County with over 73% (2,484 votes to Warnock’s 869) during the midterm election.
- With the recent decision by Fulton County Superior Court Judge Thomas Cox to allow early voting to begin on Saturday, November 26, and the decision left on the county, Warnock came to the county seat of Johnson County to see if he could gain more support than he did the first time around. In some ways it seems like he has.
- “Being someone that grew up here in the same era as Herschel Walker, this is an enormous accomplishment,” Elgin Dixon, a Wrightsville native and retired educator, said of the crowd. “We are standing behind the quality of the candidate, that’s why we are standing with Senator Warnock.”
- Walker’s former high school teacher and assistant football coach Curtis Dixon received a large ovation when he took the stage. He began his speech by telling the crowd what Walker did to get ready to play football in high school, and then later college and the National Football League. Then said, “Now ask me what has he done to be a senator and I’ll tell you what he’s done, not a blessed thing. He’s not ready.”
- State Rep. Mack Jackson (District 128), also a fan favorite, added, “Ladies and gentlemen we’ve got to get back out and vote.”
- Warnock told the crowd that after he wins this election he would be back to Wrightsville. After the event he told The Atlanta Voice, “I’ve been wanting to come here for quite some time and I’m glad I was able to make it. I made a promise to these folks and I mean it, I will be back after I win.”
- Warnock added, “I think Washington (D.C.) could use some Wrightsville values. Small places like this teach basic values, like your word is your bond. If you say something you ought to mean it and you ought to tell the truth. I think Herschel Walker could benefit from spending some time in Wrightsville, maybe recapture some Wrightsville values.”
The Epoch Times: Warnock Stumps in Walker’s Hometown
- At a formerly segregated school in Herschel Walker’s hometown, there was little love for him shown Monday night.
- His opponent in Georgia’s Senate runoff, Raphael Warnock, spoke at a Wrightsville rally where more than 200 people had crowded into what was once the Dock Kemp School’s cafeteria and auditorium.
- “I was his high school teacher and assistant football coach,” said Curtis Dixon, one of the speakers warming up the crowd for Warnock. On what Walker did to become a football great, Dixon said, “He’d say, ‘I trained, I worked hard, I did sit-ups.’” “Ask him what he has done to become a senator. I’ll tell you: Not a blessed thing.”
- “People ask, ‘Why aren’t black people supporting Herschel Walker?” Dixon said. “Because black people don’t think he’s the best candidate.”
- “There’s a skill set,” he added. “As a football player, he was fast, he was big, he was strong. That won’t work in the Senate. He’s not ready.”
- Dixon and other speakers pounded the point: Warnock is already ready because he’s been in the Senate for two years and has already gone through the learning curve. They said they needed someone who would walk in the footsteps of Martin Luther King and John Lewis.
- “We need someone with the institutional knowledge, not a freshman,” said the area’s state representative Mack Jackson. He pointed to Warnock’s work towards expanding Medicaid coverage and building Interstate-14 through south Georgia as concrete reasons to support the incumbent.
- Dixon contrasted the controversies surrounding Walker—about his personal life and his honesty—with actions of Warnock’s, notably getting arrested at least twice for demonstrating for better health care. “We need someone who’s going to cause some good trouble,” Dixon said.
- Warnock, who made the trip about 150 miles from Atlanta, gave his stump speech—tailored, of course, for the unique circumstances of visiting his opponent’s hometown.
- He told the crowd that growing up in the 1980s, he’d been a fan of Walker’s during his storied career at the University of Georgia, where he won the Heisman Trophy and led the Bulldogs to a national championship.
- “I saw what your favorite son did on the football field. That brother could razzle and dazzle you on the football field. And he deserves credit for that,” Warnock said. “But tonight, we’re on a different field. And the people of Georgia need a true champion.”
- “This race is about competence and character,” Warnock said. “Those who know Herschel Walker best know he isn’t ready,” Warnock told reporters after his speech. “They’re not talking out of malice but out of concern.”
- Johnson County, where Wrightsville is located, went 74 percent for Walker and 26 percent for Warnock. The 2020 census showed it 63 percent white and 33 percent black. Wrightsville itself is majority black by a narrow margin.
- Jerronney Darisaw, a county commissioner who spoke about his brother being killed in a racial incident during segregation, noted that regardless of who won, “Johnson County will have a senator. Just don’t forget about Johnson County. Don’t come here just when you need something.”
- “Amen!” folks in the crowd said.
- Later, as Warnock wrapped up his speech, he seemed to be responding to that. He said that if he wins, “I’ll be back again and again and again. Because I am a champion of ordinary people.”
- In another campaign-related development, a judge on Monday denied the state’s appeal of a court’s earlier ruling allowing early voting this Saturday, Nov. 26, which the state had first announced would be permitted, then reversed its decision on. Warnock’s campaign and state and federal campaigns had sued to obtain legal clearance for the extra day of early voting, which is, however, actually instituted on a county-by-county basis.
Watch Full Video HERE
POLITICO: Playbook PM
- Sen. RAPHAEL WARNOCK’s campaign is up with a new video today featuring HERSCHEL WALKER’s former teacher and football coach CURTIS DIXON — a Wrightsville, Ga., native who is making the case for Warnock that Walker isn’t fit to serve as a senator.
- “The biggest difference between the two candidates — we’re talking about the skill sets,” Dixon says. “I feel Herschel is — he has the minimum requirement, but he does not have the criteria to be a representative to serve the people.” Watch the video.