There are gifts that keep giving, and gifts you’d be totally OK with not having. Herschel Walker’s U.S. Senate campaign falls, obviously, in the latter category. Early on it was great from a journalism perspective: a celebrity athlete with a lot of questions to answer jumping into politics provides great fodder. But as time moved on, Walker’s lies, his clear lack of grasp of issues, policy or reality itself in some instances, makes it impossible to cover his campaign with any pretense of objectivity. Upholding a commitment to truth requires pointing out how absurdly unqualified he is for elective office and admitting how frightening it is that with a month left to campaign, he’s got a better-than-good shot at deposing a qualified legislator and taking an oath come January.
Which leaves us covering what remains of the campaign like a reality show gone off the rails. In today’s episode, a thickening plot in which our friends at the Daily Beast whipped out another receipt connecting Walker to a woman who two days ago, he swore he absolutely, positively did not cajole to abort their child and then reimburse for having said abortion. Walker swore he had absolutely no idea who the woman might even be, the problem for him being that the woman, who the Daily Beast until this morning hadn’t identified, turns out to be the mother of another one of Walker’s children.
The woman, a registered Democrat whose years-long relationship with Walker continued after the abortion, told The Daily Beast that her chief concern with revealing her name was because she is the mother of one of Walker’s own children and she wanted to protect her family’s privacy as best she could while also coming forward with the truth. (Walker has publicly acknowledged the child as his own, and the woman proved she is the child’s mother and provided credible evidence of a long-term relationship with Walker.)
The Walker campaign declined to comment for this story.
Of course they declined comment, because, what could he say in refutation of, “The woman you said you had no idea existed has, in fact, brought your offspring into the world?” Theoretically, it is possible. It’s not unheard of that a man might have had an encounter that produced a pregnancy and a child of which he was unaware until years later. But given Walker’s history of denying/ignoring his own children, what’s more likely: that he legit forgot about one of the mothers—including the part of their relationship where they terminated a pregnancy—or that, like the others, he simply pretended it all never happened until he was forced to admit that it all did.