When Judge Roy Moore announced he was planning on running for Alabama's Senate seat once again in 2020, the President had a surprising reaction: Don't.
Initially, Moore had Trump's support. In 2017, he received the President's backing in the race for Mitch McConnell's recently vacated Senate seat. Senator Luther Strange briefly filled the seat and had the President's favor, but following his narrow loss to Moore in the primary, favor transferred from Strange to Moore.
No more, it seems. Following Moore's announcement of his intention to run next year, the president tweeted: “Republicans cannot allow themselves to again lose the Senate seat in the Great State of Alabama. This time it will be for Six Years, not just Two. I have NOTHING against Roy Moore, and unlike many other Republican leaders, wanted him to win. But he didn’t, and probably won’t.”
The president hammered home the importance to the Republican agenda of maintaining control of the Alabama senate, citing the possibility of losing the “many gains made during [his] Presidency”, such as the tightening of restrictions around abortion. And Moore, according to Trump, has proven he is simply incapable of winning.
Moore's loss to Democrat Doug Jones came following numerous allegations of sexual impropriety with young women. Dating back to 1977, eight women have come forward stating that Moore wooed and assaulted or attempted to assault them. The girls ranged in age from fourteen to twenty eight years old (the age of consent in Alabama is sixteen, making even a consensual relationship between someone under that age, as two of the girls were at the time, statutory rape), while Moore was in his thirties and forties at the times of the alleged incidents. He was also married.
Yet despite this, his wife Kayla has stuck by him. In a new fundraising pitch for her husband's campaign, Mrs. Moore compared her husband (who, for what it's worth, has been twice defrocked as a judge) to Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Kavanaugh was appointed a Supreme Court justice, despite sexual assault allegations from Dr. Christine Blasey Ford. If, according to Kayla Moore, Kavanaugh could “survive” this horrible accusations and become a Supreme Court justice, so could her husband.
“It was no strange coincidence that only 10 months later these same false and scurrilous tactics would again be used in the midst of a very important Supreme Court nomination process of Brett Kavanaugh in 2018,” the pitch references bipartisan “falsehoods and deceits”, conspired by both Democrats and Republicans to end Moore's political career. “Judge Kavanaugh would survive to be appointed to that high court.”
Despite this, Trump seems unconvinced. If Moore could get the people of Alabama to elect Doug Jones, the first Democrat Alabama has elected to the Senate in decades, he is not only incapable of winning, but a threat to Trump's prosperity.
The president's oldest son, Donald Jr., agrees. “If you actually care about #MAGA more than your own ego, it’s time to ride off into the sunset, Judge,” Don Jr. tweeted to Moore.
Moore is currently being sued by Leigh Corfman, one of his accusers.