The breaking news that Judge Roy Moore, Alabama Republican candidate, was involved in unbecoming behavior with teenage girls almost forty years ago has the establishment GOP and the Democrats in a righteous fury. But is it all it seems to be? Could this perhaps be a hatchet job to remove Trump faithfuls from the board?
The allegations state that Moore sexually assaulted a 14-year-old girl back in 1979. Since this came out, several other women have come forward stating that when he was in his 30s, he took them out on dates when they were just teenagers.
Why the Delay
Moore has been a huge public figure in Alabama for forty years; to choose right now as the moment to get over the fear and humiliation of a sexual assault does seem a bit suspect. And then there are the teenage girls that Moore took out. It is unmentioned in the media if these girls were over the age of consent or not. The clever use of the term “teenager” creates connotations in the minds of the readership that make the allegations of the 14-year-old (now 52) seem more believable.
The question now is whether any proof can be gathered. The answer is no. We have someone who claims to have been sexually assaulted thirty-eight years ago, coming forward at a juncture that will have the most damaging impact. Why were there no allegations when Judge Moore was in his court as a highly-respected and well-known officer?
It is no secret that House Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is not a fan of Moore. The Kentucky Senator directed millions of dollars to prop up the candidacy of fellow establishment figure Luther Strange in the primary against Moore. And the ultimate establishment figure, Sen. John McCain, said on Thursday that Moore should withdraw from the race, no matter whether the allegations are true or not.
Without making presumptions on Moore’s innocence or guilt, it would be fair to say that an allegation like this will do a certain amount of damage not just to Moore personally, but to the MAGA platform and Steve Bannon’s crusade to bring it about.
The Reality of Moore’s Situation
It is a sad fact, but the allegations themselves might prove enough to do damage to his campaign. In today’s shallow and often mindless society, we have moved far beyond the presumption of innocence; especially in cases of sexual misconduct. The procedure has become belief first, investigate second, and this makes our civil society not so civil and all the poorer.
Yet there is a light at the end of the tunnel. If Moore can prove that he had no sexual relations and that this was, in fact, a hatchet job launched by his own party or the Democrats, it may force people to take these and any other allegations against a political candidate with a grain of salt. And perhaps that is where they most likely belong until guilt or innocence is proven in a court of law.