Herschel Walker's campaign confirms he has a second child
By Michael Warren, CNN
(CNN) -- The campaign of Herschel Walker publicly acknowledged this week that the Republican Senate candidate has a second son with a woman who was not his wife.
The Georgia GOP nominee's admission follows a Tuesday report in the Daily Beast that Walker fathered a son more than a decade ago. The Beast reported it had confirmed the identity of the boy and the mother, and that the mother had sued Walker in order to obtain a declaration of paternity and child support. According to the report, Walker was ordered to pay child support starting in 2014.
Walker, who is challenging Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock in one of the country's key Senate races this year, speaks frequently about Christian Walker, the son he and his ex-wife had together and raised along with Walker's current wife.
Walker has publicly criticized absentee fathers, particularly in Black families.
"And I want to apologize to the African American community, because the fatherless home is a major, major problem," Walker told conservative activist Charlie Kirk in a 2020 interview. In another interview that year with conservative media personalities Diamond and Silk, Walker said that men who have "a child with a woman, even if you have to leave that woman ... you don't leave the child."
When asked for confirmation of the Daily Beast's report, the Walker campaign provided CNN with a statement from campaign manager Scott Paradise.
"Herschel had a child years ago when he wasn't married. He's supported the child and continues to do so. He's proud of his children. To suggest that Herschel is 'hiding' the child because he hasn't used him in his political campaign is offensive and absurd," said Paradise.
Since entering the political arena -- with the enthusiastic backing of former President Donald Trump -- Walker has faced several questions about his account of his own life and experience.
In one case, he claimed for years to have graduated from the University of Georgia in the top 1% of his class and included the detail on his campaign website. But CNN's KFile confirmed The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's April report that Walker did not graduate from UGA, the school where he became a football star and left early to play professionally. The claim that he graduated at the top of his class was scrubbed from his campaign website a few months earlier, along with a claim that he was the valedictorian of his high school (which has been replaced by a claim he was at the "top of his class" in high school).
Last month, Walker even falsely claimed that he had not made the false claim about graduating from UGA.
The Georgia US Senate seat is a top target for Republicans this fall; Warnock won it in a 2021 runoff, two months after President Joe Biden's victory in the state.
In its statement, Walker's campaign also raised the issue of Warnock's child support dispute with his ex-wife, who is suing to change the conditions of Warnock's payments.
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