It was deeply unfortunate when Herschel Walker, during a church appearance last weekend, suggested that the existence of apes disproves evolutionary biology. But as The Washington Post reported, during the same event, the Georgia Republican also appeared to question in vitro fertilization and other forms of assisted reproductive technology.
“And then, the conception of a baby,” Walker said. “Let me tell you, science can’t do that. They’re still trying to do it, but they can’t, because there has to be a God.”
People can certainly draw their own theological conclusions about religion and reproduction, but the GOP Senate candidate may need a briefing or two on the substantive details of this issue. As HuffPost noted, “Science has, of course, made remarkable progress over the years in assisting people trying to have children, with methods like in vitro fertilization.”
In other words, to the benefit of many American families, science can “do that.”
When the Post sought comment from the Walker campaign, a spokesperson for the Republican said, “The country is unraveling thanks to Raphael Warnock and Joe Biden and the media wants to talk about Herschel in church on a Sunday morning. No wonder we’ve got problems.”
In other words, according to his own campaign, Walker’s public comments aren’t especially important, and aren’t deserving of scrutiny.
But that’s not how this is supposed to work. There are only 100 members of the United States Senate, and the retired football player, who has no background in policymaking, intends to be one of these powerful officials in less than a year.
With this in mind, evaluating Walker’s public pronouncements might be annoying to his campaign team, which tried to keep the candidate “largely behind closed doors“ for a while, but it’s an important part of the process.
And as regular readers know, those pronouncements reflect a candidate who doesn’t appear prepared for the task at hand. The first-time candidate has tried to argue that the late-Rep. John Lewis was a senator who’d oppose the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. Walker has falsely claimed the FDA had approved an unproven “dry mist” mystery treatment for Covid-19. The Republican then said it was “totally unfair“ to ask for his opinion about the bipartisan infrastructure law.
He also rejects evolution and doubts the efficacy of in vitro fertilization — an issue that is likely to come up in the Senate, given the GOP’s criticisms of stem-cell research.
If Walker and his team find this scrutiny irritating, they probably won’t enjoy the rest of the campaign season.