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Ex-Georgia football star Herschel Walker wins Republican Senate nomination

Ex-Georgia football star Herschel Walker easily won the Republican Senate primary in his home state, setting him up to take on incumbent Democrat Raphael Warnock in November.

Walker beat six other GOP candidates, including Gary Black, the Georgia Agriculture Commissioner, with 70.4 percent of the vote.

The former Bulldogs running back, 1980 national champion, and 1982 Heisman Trophy, Walker was the heavy favorite to represent the Republicans in the race after securing an endorsement from former President Donald Trump.

“You were the greatest football player, you’ll be an even greater politician and senator," Trump said after Walker won the nomination. 

"I know now, I knew right from the beginning when I first spoke to you, that this man is going to do things that are incredible. So congratulations not only for the night but for the great numbers, and you’re going to go on to a tremendous victory for a long time."

Walker, now 60, is a native of Wrightsville, Georgia, but had not lived in the state for more than 30 years before announcing his bid for the Senate.

The former Georgia football legend has been close with Trump dating back to the 1980s, when he played for the Trump-owned New Jersey Generals of the old USFL, and Walker was a consistent supporter of Trump during his presidency.

Some Republican officials in Georgia were concerned about Walker running early on, given his lack of political experience, and a history of alleged domestic violence.

In 2005, Walker's ex-wide secured a protective order against him, alleging threats.

In three seasons at Georgia from 1980 to 1982 under famed head coach Vince Dooley, Walker rushed for 5,259 yards and 49 touchdowns. He caught 26 passes with four additional touchdowns as a receiver.

He scored twice in the 1981 Sugar Bowl to bring Georgia what was its most recent national championship before the Bulldogs won the College Football Playoff in 2021.

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