Hershel Walker (Screen capture via CNN)

Walker Candidacy Insults Intelligence of Black Voters

The official end of Hershel Walker’s Senate candidacy earlier this month brings to a close another failed saga in the Republican Party spin machine’s attempts to deploy tokenism to cloak a platform of blatant racism and open flirtation with white Christian nationalism in the disguise of a diversity pitch.

Many saw Walker’s nomination for a Senate seat in Georgia for what it was: a poorly planned political attempt to create a new narrative about race while courting potential crossover voters in predominantly Black regions of the state. It’s no secret that the GOP did everything it could to try and wrestle back control of the Senate. And Walker’s nomination was absolutely a tactic designed to confuse Black voters.

Let’s be clear: The GOP has fully embraced racism, and using Walker as a token Black friend is a prominent example of that.

I’m glad that Black voters in Georgia saw right through the spin and voted for a candidate who actually lives in Georgia and is passionate about fighting for his constituents and their shared values. Black voters overwhelmingly — 90% percent — voted for Rev. Warnock, refusing to fall for the chimera candidate in the GOP’s Black man versus Black man trap.

Walker wasn’t chosen for his ability to do the job or his political experience. Instead, Walker got the nod because of his loyalty to former President Donald Trump, his willingness to parrot party lines on cue and, most importantly, because he’s Black (enough).

One of Walker’s prime cheerleaders on the campaign trail was Sen. Lindsey Graham, who spent a lot of his time campaigning by doubling down on the topic of race, suggesting that a Walker win would acquit the GOP of racism.

During an appearance on Sean Hannity’s show on Fox News in October of this year, Graham said, “Walker changes the entire narrative of the left.”

“What happens when the Republican Party elects and nominates Herschel Walker, an African-American, Black, Heisman Trophy winner?”

As cringeworthy as Graham’s comments are, it shows that Graham and fellow conservatives are using Walker’s skin color for their own political gain, which is ironic considering how loud conservatives like Graham get whenever there is any discussion of race being weaponized in politics.

Graham also claimed that, “they’re scared to death of Herschel Walker because if Herschel Walker becomes a Republican, maybe every other young child in America of color might want to be a Republican.”

Judging by his insulting and ignorant comments, what Graham and his colleagues fail to realize is that Black people in this country have been avoiding racial Trojan Horses on the ballot like Walker since the classic Civil Rights Movement.

Choosing Walker, in fact, shows how ignorant and bigoted the GOP is when it comes to Black voters and how out of touch they are with the changing political landscape.

Black voters are not a monolith and being “melanated enough” isn’t going to automatically get you a vote. And assuming that “being Black” is a sufficient political platform is insulting to the intelligence of Black voters.

Recent history and voting trends show that Black voters tend to vote for candidates that fight for democracy, even when our community is being overlooked.

The GOP’s tactics during this race produced nothing short of a meritless, unresearched circus act. If the GOP had done the bare minimum, they would have realized that Walker is so out of touch with the Black community and last-ditch efforts to push him on voters in predominantly Black and Democratic areas was a waste of everyone’s time.

In the end, the racial polarization in Georgia was crystal clear in exit polls showing Warnock winning 90 percent of Black voters and the barely sentient Walker winning 70 percent of white voters.

Story courtesy of the Washington Blade via the National LGBTQ Media Association. The National LGBTQ Media Association represents 13 legacy publications in major markets across the country with a collective readership of more than 400K in print and more than 1 million + online. Learn more here: https://nationallgbtmediaassociation.com/