A ‘game changer?’ Herschel Walker rushes to air ad for Loeffler

09/25/2020 - Atlanta, Georgia - Former professional football player Herschel Walker speaks to the crowd before introducing President Donal Trump during a Blacks for Trump campaign rally at the Cobb Galleria Centre in Atlanta, Friday, September 25, 2020. (Alyssa Pointer / Alyssa.Pointer@ajc.com)

Credit: Alyssa Pointer / Alyssa.Pointer@ajc.com

Credit: Alyssa Pointer / Alyssa.Pointer@ajc.com

Mired in a tight special election race, U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler unleashed Georgia icon Herschel Walker in a TV ad that’s set to saturate the airwaves through November.

Cradling a football, Walker speaks directly to camera while a clip plays of him steamrolling a hapless defensive back as he vouches for the Republican incumbent.

“When I played football, I ran over a lot of people, and I didn’t let anyone run over me,” Walker said. “My friend Kelly Loeffler is like that. When the fake news media attacked Kelly, she went right back at them.”

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The ad will get plenty of airtime until the Nov. 3 special election, including slots in Saturday’s primetime Georgia-Alabama matchup. Her campaign hopes the Bulldog’s bite gives Loeffler an edge over U.S. Rep. Doug Collins, her Republican arch-rival.

With nearly two dozen candidates on the same ballot, the two are competing for a spot in a likely January runoff along with Democratic frontrunner Raphael Warnock, an establishment-backed pastor who has soared ahead of both in recent polls.

Walker’s debut in the race is the latest addition to a constellation of Loeffler ads that have ranged from shiny soft-focus spots to a series that asserted she’s more conservative than “Attila the Hun.”

Loeffler has fueled the ad onslaught by pumping $20 million of her own cash into her campaign, and her husband Jeff Sprecher, the owner of a behemoth Atlanta-based financial platform, has underwritten an outside group that’s raised another $10 million.

Though he lives in Texas, Walker has become an important figure in Georgia GOP circles. He was a key supporter of Gov. Brian Kemp, who appointed Loeffler. And he spoke at the Republican National Convention of his close ties to President Donald Trump.

In the 30-second ad, Walker emphasizes Loeffler’s loyalty to the president, her anti-abortion stance and her fight against the “radical cancel culture.”

“Take it from me, Herschel: She’s a game changer for Georgia.”

See the ad, “Game Changer,” here:

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