The story of Senate candidate Roy Moore should be about whether he behaved inappropriately with an underage girl. In light of Monday’s fresh accusations against the Alabama Republicans, the story should, perhaps, be whether or not he sexually assaulted a 16-year-old female.
Instead, there are two big conversations dominating the news cycle and, more particularly, social media: The first is which side, left or right, holds the moral high-ground, in terms of sexual misconduct; the second is how the Republican Party extricates itself from the dilemma in which Moore – by his own misconduct or not – has entangled it.
Beverly Young Nelson became the fifth woman to accuse the Judge of sexual impropriety Monday when she appeared at a press conference organized by infamous attorney and publicity-hound Gloria Allred. Her allegation was the most serious of those made against Moore, whose recent interview with Sean Hannity did little to convince people of his innocence.
Sexual Predator or Smear Victim?
Questions remain about the timing of the supposed revelations of Moore’s past. Those questions are not so much concerned with the credibility of the women who have alleged harassment or assault by the would-be Senator as they are with the circumstances surrounding the claims. With just weeks to go until the election to fill Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ seat, these ladies appear – some forty years after the alleged events took place. The Washington Post sought them out; a fact that, in itself, arouses suspicion.
The involvement of Gloria Allred adds another layer of skepticism to the sordid affair. The attorney was revealed by WikiLeaks as a Democratic Party operative, involved in collusion to smear President Donald Trump during the presidential election campaign.
Since there is no way for the allegations against Moore to be either proven or disproven, in the absence of exact dates and times, it really is a literal case of ‘he said, she said.’ The progressive left, with its promotion of gender-fluidity and an aggressive anti-heterosexual agenda, pushed even upon small children, seems to be hopelessly ill-equipped to be preaching sexual morality.
On this subject, the elephant in the room – so to speak – is former President Bill Clinton. If mere accusations made by alleged female victims are always to be taken as the unquestioned truth, then Clinton is a rapist. Those who voted for and continue to admire him are in no position to speak ill of Roy Moore.
On the other hand, Moore himself, along with millions of Christian conservatives, should be extremely careful about trying to brush off such allegations. When one sets oneself up as a champion of moral values, one appears grossly hypocritical when treating even the suspicion of child molestation with anything less than the greatest concern.
The Judge has indicated his intention to file a lawsuit against the Washington Post. This would seem like an all-or-nothing move; should he go forward with legal action, it can be assumed that he knows he is innocent of the alleged offenses. Not carrying out his threat will now be seen – and, perhaps, rightly so – as a fairly solid indication that the allegations are not without merit.
Regardless of the facts in these cases, the Republican Party has a mess on its hands. Moore is on the ballot for the Alabama special election; nothing, at this point, will change that. A number of GOP Senators have already distanced themselves from Moore, including majority leader Mitch McConnell.
With a razor-thin majority in the Senate, Republicans may be forced to indulge in some serious brinkmanship: Cutting off all cooperation with Moore’s campaign and renouncing all support for his candidacy may hand the seat to the Democrats. It is also quite possible, however, that Moore will win, regardless. With nothing proven against him, the Judge’s supporters will, likely, not abandon him. The GOP may find their Senate majority undamaged even without having to openly support Moore. Assuming he still wins the special election, the question for Republicans becomes how to handle his predicament, going forward.