Georgia is holding a high-stakes primary election for US Senate. Polls in most of the state closed at 7 p.m. ET.
The race and the stakes:
Walker — a former University of Georgia Bulldogs football standout and ex-NFL star — secured President Donald Trump’s endorsement for the seat early on, allowing him to far surpass the rest of the field in campaign spending.
A first-time political candidate, Walker has raised $16 million and spent $9 million on his campaign so far.
He has so far managed to poll well ahead of his Republican challengers, who include Georgia agriculture commissioner Gary Black, former state Rep. Josh Clark, businessman and Air Force veteran Kelvin King, pastor and former Army Special Forces Brigadier Gen. Jonathan McColumn, and former Navy SEAL Latham Saddler.
Walker is expected to easily capture the nomination, despite sharp attacks from Black about the candidate’s personal conduct with regards to prior relationships and questions surrounding his business dealings.
Although Walker’s absence has been a major topic at the GOP Senate debates, he has dismissed any criticism, arguing that he wanted to focus on his general election challenger, Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock.
Meanwhile, Warnock, a fundraising juggernaut facing no Democratic primary opposition, has raised nearly $30 million, spent $10 million, and has $22 million in cash on hand this cycle.
He won a 2021 special runoff election for the seat — defeating appointing Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler by a 51%-49% margin — and is now up for a full six-year term.
The matchup between Warnock and Walker is expected to be one of the marquee races this fall, and with a current 50-50 makeup in the upper chamber, the contest could very well determine which party holds a majority after the midterms.