Sexual allegations have exploded in the wake of the Weinstein affair. Many prominent men are now in trouble over their sexual assault and harassment.
The latest is the GOP’s Alabama Senate candidate, Roy Moore. A Washington Post report alleged that as a 32-year-old, Moore “initiated sexual contact” with a 14-year-old girl. Further, in his 30s, he pursued relationships with teenagers.
Unsurprisingly, candidate Moore was swift to deny the allegations. In a statement straight out of the Donald Trump playbook, Moore attacked the “liberal” paper and “fake news.”
Sexual Allegations: Political Implications
Naturally, the allegation of sexual contact with the 14-year old has rocked Republican politics – to an extent. Most Republicans took the position that “if these allegations are true,” Moore should step aside.
Moore is unlikely to listen to them for two reasons.
One, Moore and the GOP establishment have not exactly been close. Remember, Senate Leader McConnell preferred incumbent Senator Luther Strange.
Two, Moore is probably calculating that enough Alabamans will turn out to elect him to the Senate. He has already defied the law and been rewarded politically — twice.
For Moore, one indication that he can survive and triumph are the Alabama Republicans who have jumped to his defense. That their excuses are silly are another matter.
Sexual Allegations: Absurd Defenses
Off all the defenses offered by Alabama Republicans, the one that took the cake was by Alabama state auditor Jim Ziegler.
According to Ziegler, nothing “immoral or illegal” happened. Ziegler also offered a comparison of teenage Mary and the adult Joseph as examples. As you would expect, Ziegler’s religious illiteracy got roundly slammed.
Other Alabama GOP officials were hardly better in their defenses. One claimed the interaction with the 14-year-old happened long ago, and Moore had only “tried” to get the child to touch his genitals.
For some Alabama Republicans, the Democrats are so evil that nothing would get them to consider not voting for Moore. Also, some saw the accusations as evidence of a conspiracy.
In a politically breath-taking response, one Alabama GOP leader cast doubt on the timing, and the role played by the Washington Post. Paul Reynolds said, “If I’ve got a choice of putting my welfare into the hands of [Russian President Vladimir] Putin or The Washington Post, Putin wins every time.”
Too bad Putin can’t run for US President.
Sexual Allegations: Lawsuit to Defer Political Pain?
According to one report, the Moore and his wife do intend to sue the Post.
Then, if Moore was to stay in the Senate race and win, even if he were to lose the lawsuit, Alabama’s Republican Governor could appoint a Republican to the Senate seat.
In the meantime, Republicans would have to put up with the incendiary Moore in the Senate. Still, they would probably have a reliable Trumpist.
If other Republicans were to run as write-in candidates, they might divide the GOP vote. Therefore, for both Moore and the GOP, Moore suing the Post would be the best move.