Herschel Walker, the Republican U.S. Senate candidate from Georgia, claims he only learned the identity of the woman who claims he reimbursed her for a 2009 abortion procedure on Friday, according to NBC News.
Walker’s wife, Julie Walker, reportedly initiated a conversation with the woman, who is also the mother of one of Herschel Walker’s four children, Friday morning.
“Did you know Herschel paid for my abortion the first time? Or that he told me it wasn’t the ‘right time’ to have (her current child)?” the woman wrote in a 9:54 a.m. text message sent Friday.
In an interview with NBC, Herschel Walker continued to deny allegations that he paid for the woman’s abortion.
“The first I knew about any of this was when some reporter asked me about an abortion. And I’m like, ‘No, that’s a lie.’ And then I was asked if I paid for an abortion, and I said No. I did not pay for an abortion,” Herschel Walker said. “I’m not saying she did or didn’t have one. I’m saying I don’t know anything about that. I don’t know.”
News broke last week of the alleged abortion, with both The Daily Beast, which first reported the claim, and the New York Times saying the woman showed a copy of a $700 check and a get-well card from Walker. The Times reported the woman provided a $575 receipt from Atlanta Women’s Medical for the abortion and a copy of the $700 check she said Walker provided as reimbursement, as well as the card with a handwritten message saying, “pray you are feeling better” and signed, “H.”
Walker told NBC he doesn’t remember sending the check or card, noting that he could have sent either, but not for the alleged abortion.
The Times report, based on an interview with the woman, also reveals Walker had asked her to end her second pregnancy with her now 10-year old son. She told the news outlet that Walker had very little interaction with his son and had “maybe only seen him three times.”
The Walker campaign provided copies of text messages between the woman who claims to have been reimbursed by Walker for her abortion and Mrs. Walker dating back to May.
In them, Mrs. Walker expressed frustration with the woman.
“This message makes me incredibly sad. You know I have continually tried to bridge a better relationship between you and Herschel putting (the child) first,” Mrs. Walker wrote.
Indeed, earlier text messages showed at least a cordial relationship between the two women, with the unidentified woman texting well-wishes to Mrs. Walker on Primary Election Day.
“He’ll do great & you will keep him focused! Proud of you guys!” the woman wrote to Julie Walker. “Wishing nothing but the best for you tonight!!!”
After results came in and Walker was declared the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate, she again texted her congratulations.
The woman told the Times she communicated solely through Mrs. Walker about her son, with Mrs. Walker sometimes calling to find out her son’s size before sending gifts.
Texts also show the two exchanging texts about summer camp, according to the Times.
The woman who made the abortion allegations is a Democrat, the Times reported.
The latest series of reports and interviews escalate an already difficult situation for the Walker campaign. Walker has been an outspoken critic of abortion access, favoring limitations without exceptions for rape or incest or in cases necessary to save the life of the mother.
Walker’s own son, Christian Walker, came out against his father, tweeting, “you’re not a ‘family man’ when you left us to bang a bunch of women, threatened to kill us, and had us move over 6 times in 6 months running from your violence.”
Christian Walker wrote that his father “lived a life of DESTROYING other peoples (sic) lives” and accused his father of lying and acting like he was “some ‘moral, Christian, upright man.’”
Still, Republicans have stood by Walker, with U.S. Sen. Rick Scott, who chairs the U.S. Senate Republicans’ campaign efforts, claiming, “Democrats are losing” and that they “lie and cheat and smear their opponents,” in specific reference to allegations against Herschel Walker.
Walker himself also blames Democrats.
“Democrats are desperate to hold onto this seat here, and they’re desperate to make this race about my family,” Walker told reporters following last week’s initial allegations.
Walker is in a tight race against incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Raphael Warnock. Most polls show Warnock leading the race, though the end result is expected to be close. A poll from Fox News released earlier this month shows Warnock up 46%-41%, which falls within the measure’s 3.5-percentage-point margin of error.
Georgia has been purpling of late, electing two Democratic U.S. Senators and delivering its electoral votes to Joe Biden in the 2020 cycle. Warnock won election with 51% of the vote two years ago.