McConnell ready to funnel more help to Walker
August 23, 2022
Also in today’s edition of Swing State Georgia:
Herschel doubles down on trees.
Alvin the Beagle returns.
Judge asks Lindsey Graham to say what he’ll answer in Trump probe.
Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell might be lowering expectations for his party’s chances of winning back the U.S. Senate in November, but our Insiders are getting signals that the Senate’s top Republican isn’t giving up on Georgia.
GOP officials have let it be known that McConnell is planning to hold a fundraiser with Walker as soon as this week - possibly on Friday - but were staying mum on the location and further details.
Talk about a McConnell-Walker fundraiser comes a few days after the Kentucky Republican publicly expressed the concern that “candidate quality” could jeopardize GOP chances of flipping the Senate.
It didn’t take much imagination to place Walker in that group, as the former University of Georgia football star has repeatedly made campaign trail statements which have caused headaches for his own campaign (see below).
McConnell's political action group - the Senate Leadership Fund - made clear months ago that it had reserved $37 million in advertising time Georgia to support the GOP nominee for U.S. Senate.
But how much more help is coming? And how worried are national Republicans about Walker’s bid to knock off Sen. Raphael Warnock? Stay tuned.
ON A LIMB. Not surprisingly, Herschel Walker’s comments on Sunday criticizing money spent on trees in a federal climate and healthcare measure garnered national attention and led the Republican to push back.
“Yes you heard me right,” Walker tweeted, “Joe Biden and @Reverend Warnock are spending $1.5 billion on ‘urban forestry’ … Yes, I have a problem with that.”
The climate portion of the reconciliation measure includes $150 million per year for “urban forests” - a plan to plant trees in cities like Atlanta where rapid development has stripped out established trees and increased flooding for residents.
Walker on Sunday mocked such spending, saying “Don’t we have enough trees around here?”
That remark drew relative silence from a crowd of supporters at a Republican Jewish Coalition event in Sandy Springs.
Among the responses was from Democratic operative Paul Begala, who said Warnock allies “making ads against Herschel Walker must feel like a mosquito in a nudist colony: everywhere they land is fertile territory.”
HOMELESS HIT. At the same event, Herschel Walker also accused U.S. Sen. Raphael Warnock and Ebenezer Baptist Church of not doing enough to help the homeless.
“What about the homeless people out on the street here?” Walker asked. “Across from the guy running again? Have you seen his church? Have you seen the people across the street from his church, the homeless people there? Is he helping them?”
Walker might have been talking about a literal homeless shelter-- the Bashor Men’s Homeless Shelter-- which is operated by an all-volunteer staff across the street from Ebenezer through Central Presbyterian Church.
Separately, Ebenezer is a part of a community resources collaborative program that provides housing aid, free health services, food and school supplies to needy Georgians.
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DOG DAYS. Alvin the Beagle is back in the campaign for U.S. Senate. Just not in the way you’d expect.
The pugnacious puppy was the centerpiece of U.S. Sen. Raphael Warnock’s successful ad campaign during his 2020 bid for office, helping to give the Democratic pastor a feel-good aura at a time when Republicans labeled him a “radical socialist.”
Now Republican Senate hopeful Herschel Walker’s campaign is using the precious pooch against Warnock with a digital ad claiming Alvin “disappeared” as a weepy Sarah McLachlan song plays.
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