Letters to the Editor: The simple reason Republicans picked Herschel Walker — celebrity
To the editor: It’s hard to deny that some white Georgians support Republican Senate candidate Herschel Walker because he will toe the party line. But something that cannot be forgotten is Walker’s power of celebrity. (“Herschel Walker’s candidacy is more interesting now that Senate control is decided,” Opinion, Nov. 16)
Here in California, we have had three celebrities go on to high office during my lifetime — Sen. George Murphy, Gov. Ronald Reagan and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Of the three, none had any experience if government, although Reagan and Murphy each served as president of the Screen Actors Guild. Yet all won their races handily.
Walker won the Heisman Trophy at the University of Georgia and went on to professional football. His lack of government experience doesn’t faze many Georgians. They remember his accomplishments on the field.
The guy who owned the first pro team Walker signed with is also his political mentor. Donald Trump realized Walker’s celebrity power when he backed him in the Georgia senatorial primary.
Steve Varalyay, Torrance
To the editor: Kudos to columnist LZ Granderson for highlighting how the GOP can support someone like Walker, though he ranks as one of the most unqualified persons to ever seek a Senate seat.
Indeed, Republicans shamelessly treat Walker “like a prop, with no agency of his own.” The GOP, to put it gently, long has lacked for Black voters’ support.
So when Republicans find a rare, charismatic Black person who spouts conservative dogma — and nonetheless can siphon off votes from a progressive Black opponent — they deem him or her a political goldmine.
That’s why Walker can count on the GOP to disregard his embarrassing ineptitude and hypocrisy — but only for as long as he delivers votes that otherwise might go to the Democrats.
Sandra Perez, Santa Maria
To the editor: It is unclear why Granderson claims to be knowledgeable about the political opinions of Georgians. But he is very clear about his dislike of Republicans.
To say Walker is an “unwitting pawn” of the Republicans reminds me of the decision by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1944 to have Harry Truman serve as vice president. The world thought the then-Missouri senator was a pawn of the Democrats.
He turned out, in my opinion, to be the greatest president in my lifetime.
Richard Haskell, Laguna Woods