Roy Moore rival: ‘Men who hurt little girls should go to jail, not the Senate’ (Guardian U.S.)

Roy Moore rival: ‘Men who hurt little girls should go to jail, not the Senate’

Doug Jones, the Democratic candidate in the Alabama Senate election, on Tuesday launched his most sustained attack yet on his Republican rival, Roy Moore.

In a speech in Birmingham a week before the vote, Jones hammered Moore, who has faced allegations of sexual misconduct involving teenaged girls.

“Men who hurt little girls should go to jail, not the US Senate,” Jones said.

The Alabama race has been roiled by allegations from women who say Moore behaved inappropriately with them when they were teenagers and he was a prosecutor in his 30s.

Two women have claimed Moore sexually assaulted them. Others have said he dated or tried to date them. The Republican candidate has denied all the allegations and pointed to a conspiracy involving “lesbians, gays, bisexuals and socialists”.

Attacking Moore, Jones contrasted the firebrand conservative judge to the state’s former governor, Robert Bentley, who resigned amidst a sex scandal in April.

“We didn’t look away with Robert Bentley when his conduct involved consenting adults and we cannot look away now that it involves children,” Jones said.

Moore has twice been forced to step down as chief justice of the Alabama supreme court, for defying federal court orders. Jones set up his Republican opponent as a figure of mockery.

“Roy Moore has never, ever served our state with honor,” he said. “He was already an embarrassment before nine courageous women chose to share their stories.”

He also attacked Moore for his position at a not-for-profit organization called the Foundation for Moral Law, which paid the Republican around $1m over a five-year period.

“I have never lived off of donations from a so-called charitable foundation,” Jones said.

The Democrat even mocked Moore for pulling a small pistol on stage at a campaign rally in September. “When you see me with a gun, I’ll be climbing in and out of a deer blind,” he said, “not prancing around on a stage in a cowboy suit.”

The speech marked a shift in tactics from Jones. From being cautious in criticizing Moore over the allegations of sexual misconduct, his campaign has become increasingly vocal and aggressive.

The speech came one day after Donald Trump formally endorsed Moore and the Republican National Committee, which had withdrawn support, renewed its involvement in the race.

According to the polling average, Moore has a 1.5-point lead.


via Guardian U.S.

December 5, 2017 at 12:03PM