Financial disclosure forms have revealed that contrary to his claims of deep ties to the state of Georgia, Republican nominee Herschel Walker in fact appears to have used his property there as a source of rental income rather than as a residence.
The news comes as Georgians turn out in record numbers to vote in the state’s Senate runoff, in which Mr Walker is trying to unseat Democratic incumbent Raphael Warnock to give his party a 50th Senate seat.
According to The Daily Beast, Mr Walker’s financial records show that while he claims to have had a property in Georgia for many years, it is in fact owned solely by his wife, collected rental income from it for nearly two decades, indicating that Mr Walker has indeed spent many years living not in Georgia but in Texas – where he has claimed a home as his primary residence for tax purposes.
Mr Walker has not commented on the various reports about his residency.
The story is reminiscent of claims that dogged Mr Walker’s fellow Trump endorsee Dr Mehmet Oz in his failed Pennsylvania Senate campaign, where victorious Democrat John Fetterman riffed endlessly on the TV medic’s thin ties to the state and his longstanding connections to neighbouring New Jersey.
Mr Walker’s campaign has been wracked by scandal and embarrassment ever since he first announced he was running. The range from Mr Walker’s lies about his educational and business background to his erratic behaviour and sometimes bizarre public statements, including one memorable riff about “bad air” coming from China.
On a darker front, it has been revealed that Mr Walker had hidden even to his own campaign staff how many children he has fathered – and that despite running on an anti-abortion platform, he allegedly has paid two women to abort pregnancies.
One of his accusers recently played tapes of explicit phonecalls between herself and the former NFL star at a press conference.
In the first round of the Senate election on November 8, Mr Warnock beat Mr Walker by less than one point, falling just 0.56 points short of the 50 per cent threshold needed to avoid a runoff. With one week to go till votes are counted in the second round, many polls show the two men in an effective tie.