Roy Moore is one of many politicians to be hit with sexual allegations in recent months. Despite calls that he should be banned from joining the Senate, most Alabama Republicans say they plan to vote for the former state Supreme Court justice.
Moore will go up against Democratic rival Doug Jones in a special election on Tuesday. The two are fighting for the seat vacated by Jeff Sessions when he was appointed Trump’s Attorney General. The election could have serious implications for the balance of power in the Senate, where the Republican majority is tenuous.
“I have stated both publicly and privately over the last month that unless these allegations were proven to be true I would continue to plan to vote for the Republican nominee, Judge Roy Moore,” said Alabama Sec. of State John Merrill. “I have already cast my absentee ballot and I voted for Judge Moore.”
The allegations of sexual misconduct against Moore, which include the molestation of a 14-year-old girl, have landed Republican voters in a tough spot.
Alabama Republicans have three options: 1) They can elect someone who may or may not have sexually molested teenagers, 2) They can endanger the GOP’s power in the Senate by voting for Democratic nominee Doug Jones, and 3) They can write a name on their ballots or stay home on Tuesday.
Many Alabama politicians have reason to support Moore, because they will be at the mercy of his enthusiastic voting base when they run for re-election next year.
Most Alabama officeholders planning to vote for Moore cited the need to keep the seat in Republican hands. Alabama Governor Kay Ivey, who is planning to run for re-election in 2018, says she is bothered by the allegations but will vote for Moore anyway for the sake of GOP power in Congress.
“Some serious allegations have been made and Judge Moore has vehemently denied them. Frankly, I don’t think the people of Alabama want me, any national politician, or the national news media telling them what to think or how to vote,” said US Rep. Bradley Byrne. “The decision is ultimately up to the people of Alabama to evaluate the information they have before them and make an informed decision. We must respect the voters’ decision.”
Alabama Senator Richard Shelby is one of those who won’t be supporting Moore. Shelby told reporters he wrote in a “distinguished Republican” on his absentee ballot. “There’s a lot of smoke,” said Shelby. “Got to be fire somewhere.”
AG Jeff Sessions refrained from telling reporters how he would vote. “There have been some ads that may have suggested I endorsed a candidate, that is not so. I believe that the people of Alabama will make their own decision.”
President Trump is firmly behind Moore.
Author’s Note: Keep in mind the claims against Roy Moore are 40-year-old allegations presented through the lens of a very hostile media. Moore was never charged with a crime. He was never the target of an investigation. No jury has ever been presented with evidence against him.
It looks like Roy Moore will win Tuesday’s election, but not by as wide a margin as was expected before the allegations. The latest polls show Moore ahead of Jones by 5-7 points.
Editor’s Note: It appears the Democrats are preparing for an attack, having cleared out two of their own who have had issues. You can expect an all-out war against Roy Moore once he arrives in the Senate. The real question is how much collusion there will be with the Republican Party since he clearly has enemies there as well.