An ad from Republican Georgia U.S. Senate candidate Herschel Walker knocked his Democrat opponent for supporting transgender athletes invading women’s sports.
Released Monday with the runoff election two weeks away, the ad featured swimmer Riley Gaines, who famously criticized transgender athlete Lia Thomas after competing against him.
“I’m Riley Gaines, a 12-time NCAA All-American,” Gaines said in the ad.
Gaines went on to describe her intense training regimen that was no match against a man like Lia Thomas.
“For more than a decade, I worked so hard. 4 AM practices to be the best. But in my senior year, I was forced to compete against a biological male,” she said.
“That’s unfair and wrong,” Walker added.
Gaines noted that Democrat Senator Raphael Warnock previously voted to allow biological men into women’s sports, and she praised former professional athlete Herschel Walker for standing up “for what’s right.”
Herschel Walker is up with a new runoff ad about transgender athletes, featuring a swimmer who tied with Lia Thomas.
“My senior year, I was forced to compete against a biological male,” Riley Gaines says in the ad for Walker’s Senate campaign. pic.twitter.com/MlVxnJwkgB
— Natalie Allison (@natalie_allison) November 21, 2022
LGBTQ advocates slammed the ad, alleging it contributes to the dehumanization of transgender people.
“Shame on Herschel Walker — and shame on every politician using LGBTQ lives as political props,” Nadine Bridges, executive director of the nonprofit One Colorado, said Monday.
Such advocates have claimed that bills preventing transgenders from competing in women’s sports contributed to the shooting Sunday at Club Q in Colorado Springs – a gay nightclub.
“There’s an undeniable nexus between this kind of baseless and hateful rhetoric and the violence leveled against our community this weekend in Colorado Springs and the violence being perpetrated against marginalized communities all across this country,” Bridges said on Monday.
Likewise, Sarah Kate Ellis, president and chief executive of GLAAD, called the Walker ad “rubbish.”
“Airing this kind of rubbish under the guise of a political campaign was already deplorable enough—but in the wake of Saturday night’s massacre at Club Q, it’s simply unconscionable,” Ellis said.
“These ads should be pulled immediately from Georgia’s airwaves before more lives are put in danger,” she added.