Republican Senate hopeful overstated academic achievements for years | Georgia

A Republican Senate candidate from Georgia has said for years that he graduated in the top 1% of his college class – but in fact never graduated from college.

Herschel Walker, a former professional football player who is running as a Republican in Georgia’s U.S. Senate primary, has publicly stated on several occasions that he graduated in the top 1% of his class at the University of Georgia. although he never graduated.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (AJC) first reported that Walker lied about his college degree in December 2021. Walker later deleted the claim from his campaign website and issued a statement to the AJC grateful that he had never graduated.

“I majored in criminal justice at [University of Georgia] when I left to play in the [United States Football League] my freshman year,” Walker said in her statement. “After playing with the New Jersey Generals, I returned to Athens to complete my studies, but life and football got in the way.”

But Walker actually misrepresented his academic achievements for years in interviews and motivational speeches as recently as 2017. according to a CNN survey.

In a speech that year, Walker said“And all of a sudden I started going to the library, looking for books, standing in front of a mirror reading to myself. For Herschel, who all the kids said was retarded, to become valedictorian of his class.Graduated from the University of Georgia in the top 1% of his class.

Walker repeated these claims in a 2017 interview with Sirius XM radio: “I was also valedictorian of my class. I was also in the top 1% of my college graduating class.

Walker never graduated from the University of Georgia. After maintaining a B average throughout college, as reported the Christian-Science Monitor and the New York TimesWalker left to play professional football and never graduated.

Walker’s campaign was unable to provide proof that he graduated from the University of Georgia to CNN, but defended his athletic record.

CNN discovered that Walker also repeated false claims about his high school grades. Walker has repeatedly stated that he was valedictorian of his high school class. While Walker was one of the top students at his high school with an A average, CNN found no evidence that Walker was ever named valedictorian.

CNN also found no evidence that his high school even appointed a valedictorian or salute until 1994, after Walker graduated.

Walker’s campaign could not verify that Walker was his high school valedictorian, but provided a comment about Walker exaggerating his high school accomplishments to CNN.

“There’s not a single voter in Georgia who thinks the fact that Herschel graduated ‘best in class’ or valedictorian 40 years ago has any bearing on his ability to to be a great U.S. senator,” said Mallory Blount, director of communications. for the campaign, in a press release.

Walker remained a controversial primary candidate, with some Republicans in Georgia doubting he could win the GOP primary due to his personal background. Fair reported. Walker admitted to past violent behavior against his ex-wife Cindy Grossman and faces other charges of violence against women following incidents in 2002 and in 2012which Walker denies.

Disgusting man publicly detailed domestic violence she suffered from Walker during their relationship. In divorce petitions, Grossman said Walker was physically abusive towards her, forcing her to obtain a protective order against him. In a 2008 interview with ABC, Grossman also said that Walker pointed a gun to her head and threatened to kill her.

Walker spoke violently about his story in an exclusive 2021 interview with Axiossaying he is “responsible” for his past actions against Grossman and that he has been in therapy to address his mental health issues.

Walker, who was backed by former President Donald Trump, is the expected Republican nominee against Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock in November.

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