Herschel Walker squared off against smooth-talking incumbent Senator Raphael Warnock in their one and only debate preceding the election for Georgia’s Senate seat last night. FOX 5 Atlanta has posted video of the whole thing here. RedState’s Mr. Bonchie includes several highlights in the video clips accompanying his account/assessment of the debate here.
Caroline Downey’s straight news story for NRO includes a quote I can’t find in any clip. “Walker confirmed that he does not believe the 2020 election was stolen from former president Donald Trump. ‘President Biden won, and Senator Warnock won, which is why I decided to run,’ he said.”
The Washington Free Beacon’s Chuck Ross declared this moment a “Heisman worthy pivot.”
Heisman worthy pivot https://t.co/v7Ojgbk4q0
— Chuck Ross (@ChuckRossDC) October 15, 2022
Alana Goodman also covered the debate in a straight news story for the Washington Free Beacon. This Free Beacon story by Andrew Kerr — ignored completely by the MSM — made its way into the the debate. Goodman reports it this way:
The debate moderators also pressed Warnock over a bombshell Washington Free Beacon report, which found that a low-income housing building owned by the Ebenezer Baptist Church—where Warnock still serves as CEO and senior pastor—has attempted to evict numerous residents for late rent payments.
Warnock denied the report, and said the story was an attempt to “sully the name of Martin Luther King Jr.’s church and John Lewis’s church” by a “desperate candidate.”
“We spend every day every week feeding the hungry, and the homeless. They know that those false charges that they created are not true,” said Warnock.
The Free Beacon report was based on a dozen eviction lawsuits that Warnock’s church-owned apartment building publicly filed against residents since the start of the pandemic—including against one tenant who owed just $29 in back rent. The state of Georgia has launched an investigation into the church based on the Free Beacon report.
“Just to clarify, your position is that the allegations in these lawsuits aren’t true?” asked the moderator.
“I am saying it’s very obvious that my opponent and his allies are busy trying to sully Ebenezer Baptist Church,” claimed Warnock.
In other words, Warnock prevailed in the non-answer and evasion department.
Walker: “He won’t answer that about evicting the people from the church..”
Warnock: “We have not evicted those tenets.”
Walker: “He’s now telling you ‘I didn’t evict anyone.’ It is written in the paper!..Senator, you did! It’s okay to speak the truth. Do not bear false witness! pic.twitter.com/YxBzjr8XeX
— Washington Free Beacon (@FreeBeacon) October 14, 2022
Free Beacon reporter Andrew Kerr followed up on Twitter.
Warnock saying they’re not evicting tenants simply isn’t true.
Here’s the lawsuit.
Warnock’s church, which pays him a $7,400/mo housing allowance, owns 99% of the property in reference here. pic.twitter.com/F3DiixDI2u
— Andrew Kerr (@AndrewKerrNC) October 15, 2022
I say Warnock prevailed in the non-answer department. This was a good one too. The non-answers above and below weren’t the only ones. However, they take the cake.
Georgia Democrat Raphael Warnock is asked if the Atlanta Braves should “rethink their name, their logo, or their signature cheer.”
Warnock won’t say. pic.twitter.com/VKLxGxFad3
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) October 15, 2022
I’m omitting the give-and-take on abortion and the related stories published by the Daily Beast. Walked denied the stories and seemed to me to hold up his end of the debate on the substantive issue. Indeed, Walker at the least held his own and the whole thing contributed to the comedy of American politics. Would that the stakes weren’t so high.
UPDATE: The Washington Examiner’s Barnini Chakraborty comments in “Five takeaways from the Georgia Senate debate.”