Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has endorsed Georgia Senate candidate and Trump ally Herschel Walker, giving the former NFL star a stamp of approval from a Republican establishment that has long been skeptical of his candidacy.
“Herschel is the only one who can unite the party, defeat Senator Warnock, and help us take back the Senate. I look forward to working with Herschel in Washington to get the job done,” McConnell told Politico, in his first endorsement for a non-incumbent candidate in the midterms.
Walker will first face a primary competition before he battles Democratic Senator Raphael Warnock, installed in a special election in January, who is expected to pursue a full six year term in November 2022.
Senate Republican leaders initially withheld their support from Walker over concerns about his private life, including accusations of violent threats towards his ex-wife and erratic behavior in his business endeavors. Walker has also been transparent about his mental health struggles with Dissociative Identity Disorder, which causes a person to experience multiple personalities.
But the contender has redeemed himself in establishment GOP eyes with his robust campaign strategy and fundraising performance so far. As of mid-October, only five weeks after its launch, the Walker campaign had already raised $3.7 million. This development came after the Warnock camp said it raised $10.5 million for the race, the Associated Press reported.
While Walker has traveled with Trump to sustain momentum for the America First movement, he has also met with prominent GOP senators across the spectrum including Senator John Cornyn, chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee Rick Scott, and Senate GOP conference chair John Barrasso.
Walker has also earned the backing of Senators Lindsey Graham, Josh Hawley, Steve Daines, and Roger Marshall.