Herschel Walker claims Texas home as primary residence
Herschel Walker, the Republican running for a U.S. Senate seat in Georgia, has continued to claim his Tarrant County home as his primary residence — potentially breaking both Texas tax laws and some Georgia rules on establishing residency for the purpose of voting or running for office, according to CNN.
Why it matters: Walker will face Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock in a runoff election in December after neither candidate earned more than 50% of the vote in this month's midterm.
- The runoff results will determine how tightly Democrats control the Senate.
What happened: Though he registered to vote in Georgia last year, Tarrant County property and tax records show that Walker claimed a homestead exemption on his four-bedroom home in Westlake in 2021 and 2022.
- Texas homeowner regulations say residents can only take the exemption on a "principal residence."
- The exemption saved Walker more than $1,200 on his property tax bill last year, records from the Tarrant County tax assessor-collector show, and would net him more than $1,500 in savings this year, per the Texas Tribune.
- Walker has not publicly commented on the tax issue.
Context: Several Texas politicians have run into homestead exemption issues in the last few decades.
- Earlier this year, the Texas Tribune reported that U.S. Rep. Vicente Gonzalez, a McAllen Democrat, claimed homestead exemptions on two homes for at least eight years — saving him at least $2,300 in property taxes on the second home. A Gonzalez spokesperson told the Tribune the congressman would pay back taxes on the second property.
- In 2009, then-Gov. Rick Perry agreed to pay back $183 in property taxes on a home where his daughter lived while attending Texas A&M University after he had claimed an exemption.
- Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick had to repay $595 in taxes in 2005 after he received exemptions on two properties in the Houston area. Patrick was a talk show host at the time.
The intrigue: Walker, a former running back who played for the Dallas Cowboys, has been endorsed by former President Trump and Sen. Ted Cruz.
- The Walker campaign has been riddled with controversy, including several women alleging domestic violence and other women alleging that he paid for their abortions.
Yes, but: Despite the controversy, he was still within 1 percentage point of his opponent in this month's election.
More Dallas stories
No stories could be found
Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Dallas.