WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Chief Mitch McConnell and a slew of different Republicans referred to as on Senate candidate Roy Moore of Alabama to “step aside” if new allegations that he had sexual contact with a 14-year-old woman — in 1979, when he was 32 — are true.
Lower than an hour after the Washington Submit’s bombshell report, Republicans had been disavowing Moore, who ran as an outsider and defeated the extra institution Sen. Luther Unusual, R-Ala., in a latest main. The particular election to fill the seat, beforehand held by Lawyer Basic Jeff Classes, is scheduled for Dec. 12.
“If these allegations are true, Roy Moore should step aside for the all the obvious reasons — very disturbing allegations,” McConnell informed reporters.
The Submit story relies on an account by a girl named Leigh Corfman, now 53. In keeping with the story, she helps Republicans and voted for Donald Trump final yr.
McConnell and different Republicans didn’t specify what would persuade them that the allegations are true.
Three different girls accused Moore of pursuing them, in keeping with the Submit. All 4 had been quoted beneath their full names by the newspaper, and different witnesses confirmed they shared their tales with them on the time.
Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, the Senate’s No. 2 Republican who not too long ago endorsed Moore, mentioned the conduct described within the story was “deeply disturbing and troubling.” He mentioned the “next steps” for the race are as much as the governor of Alabama and its individuals.
Requested whether or not Moore ought to symbolize his state, Alabama’s senior senator, Richard Shelby, replied: “I supported Senator Strange — you all know that.”
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, referred to as the report “horrifying.”
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., launched an announcement calling upon Moore to step down instantly.
“The allegations against Roy Moore are deeply disturbing and disqualifying,” McCain mentioned. “He should immediately step aside and allow the people of Alabama to elect a candidate they can be proud of.”
Moore denies allegations that he had sexual contact with the 14-year-old and that he pursued relationships with different teenage women whereas he was in his 30s. “This garbage is the very definition of fake news and intentional defamation,” his marketing campaign mentioned in an announcement.
Republican senators have been sluggish to endorse Moore, with simply 5 — together with Cornyn — backing him thus far. Moore espouses extra excessive views than most U.S. senators, arguing that consensual intercourse between adults of the identical gender needs to be outlawed and suggesting that the 9/11 assaults may have been punishment for the nation distancing itself from God.
The choose made a visit to Washington on the finish of final month to courtroom senators, telling reporters briefly remarks that they weren’t telling the reality about him of their newspapers. “I don’t hate people,” he mentioned.
It’s unclear what is going to occur to Moore’s candidacy if he seeks to tug out earlier than the particular election in opposition to Democrat Doug Jones. Alabama legislation seems to say that it’s too late to interchange his identify on the poll even when he information a discover of withdrawal, however his votes wouldn’t be counted. The state GOP didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.