WATCH: Voters in Georgia lean towards Walker but break with Republican over Warnock church eviction criticism
Voters in Georgia are largely expressing their support for Republican Senate nominee Herschel Walker, but are breaking with him over the criticism he’s leveled against his opponent, incumbent Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock, concerning the latter’s church evicting tenants from apartments it owns.
Fox News Digital spoke to a number of voters around Centennial Olympic Park in downtown Atlanta this week, and asked their thoughts on the state of the heated Senate race, as well as the news that Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Warnock serves as senior pastor, was evicting a number of tenants for as little as $25.88 in past due rent while paying its pastor a hefty $7,417 monthly housing stipend.
“I think Warnock is out there, not qualified at all. I’m definitely going for Herschel this year. I think he’s definitely qualified. And Warnock is kind of corrupt in my eyes, so definitely not a Warnock fan,” resident Guy Schwartzberg told Fox.
He admitted that he hadn’t heard much about the evictions, but reacted to Walker’s offer to pay the past due rent of those being evicted with some hesitation.
“I think it’s okay to help people, but at the same time I don’t think you should actually pay for that whole building. I think there’s other means to help more needy people, but I don’t think that would be the right way to go,” he said.
Gary Abrahamson told Fox it was “nice” for Walker to offer to pay the past due rent, but that it wasn’t much of a political issue for him.
“I don’t think that’s a big deal. I mean it’s not a great thing, but, you know, it’s a business. And I honestly don’t think Warnock was as involved in that,” he added before expressing his distaste for both candidates.
“I think it’s two bad choices, but with the way the Congress is right now, and the Senate, I think we need to have more balance. So, as bad as it is, I probably would vote for Herschel Walker,” he said.
Royce Brown echoed that sentiment, telling Fox both candidates had been too negative towards each other throughout the race. He didn’t share which one he would vote for, but argued most of the negativity had been coming more from Warnock, of whom he was “not a fan.”
“I think it’s been way too ugly on both sides, actually, but more on Warnock’s side just with his constant slamming… Herschel Walker in a real ugly way,” he said.
Brown said he hadn’t heard about the evictions, but brushed away the idea any tenant that didn’t pay their rent shouldn’t be evicted.
“If you don’t pay your rent, you get evicted. That’s just kind of the way it goes. I would not hold that against Warnock for evicting people that’s not paying their bills. If I don’t pay my bills they’re going to come evict me,” he said.
“I’m not a fan of Warnock, but what he gets from the church is between him and the church.… Whether you get $7,000 or $700 a month, they’ve still got to pay their bills. That doesn’t mean because he makes a decent salary from the church that he should automatically pay for all the people that aren’t paying their rent,” he added.
Claire Sanford, however told Fox that she didn’t see Walker’s candidacy as serious, and that the race was between someone who was “qualified for office,” and someone “completely not qualified for office.”
“I think Senator Warnock has already been in office, he already has some experience, and he seems like a thoughtful person. And Herschel Walker is an ex-football player and I haven’t seen anything out of him that seems like he’s very serious about the race before he got into it, or serious about public service. So it seems more like a publicity stunt than anything,” she said.
She explained that she had read about the evictions, but she didn’t know much more about it other than it was a “he said, he said thing.”
Fox News’ Power Rankings has rated the race between Walker and Warnock as a toss-up.
The election will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 8.