Republican Senate nominee Roy Moore of Alabama has been accused of crimes that, in a more decent and responsible county, would make him ineligible to apply for a job as a peep show janitor, let alone run for U.S. Senate.
According to accounts by several women both in the Washington Post and in public statements, during the early ’80s, Moore pursued relationships with teenage girls. Any 32-year-old man who allegedly molested a 14-year-old girl, pursued dates with high schoolers and was allegedly banned from a mall for harassing teenage girls probably shouldn’t be voting on major national legislation.
However, none of this will matter on Dec. 12. Moore will probably beat his Democratic opponent Doug Jones and become a U.S. senator for Alabama. Why? Because the quest for power trumps disgust with perversion every single time.
The moment the original Washington Post story broke featuring on-the-record allegations against Moore from various women in Alabama, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said that he believed the women making the accusations and he believed that Moore should “step aside.” That was a pretty big statement; McConnell certainly didn’t come that hard at then-candidate Donald Trump during the 2016 election after the Access Hollywood tapes came out.
Even the National Republican Senatorial Committee has pulled cash support from Moore’s campaign. Is this a sign that Republican leadership has reached its breaking point? That maybe a year after biting its tongue for the sexual assaulter in chief, it’s decided that it can’t bear to have one in its august assembly of lawmakers? Are Republican senators about to get #BelieveWomen trending ?
Of course not. McConnell could not care less about Moore’s alleged moral indiscretions. Moore hasn’t been tried or convicted in a court of law, and when was the last time McConnell, or any Republican, for that matter, automatically believed a story out of the Washington Post?
McConnell is feigning disgust at Moore’s alleged behavior because he doesn’t want crazy Roy Moore in the Senate. Moore would be like a horrible mashup of Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-Ky.) self-righteousness, Breitbart conspiracy theories and Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-Texas) obstructionist legislation all wrapped up in a Southern Baptist church bulletin.
Paul shot down various forms of Obamacare repeal because the repeal didn’t go far enough; Cruz shut down the government in 2014 just to make a point. Moore is the kind of guy who will refuse to vote on a telecom bill until he’s convinced Verizon isn’t working with Planned Parenthood to implement Shariah law.
Plus, McConnell knows that midterm elections are coming in 2018. Republicans already look like they’re going to take a beating, and the last thing they need is crazy, sexist, racist, homophobic Roy Moore on television every night giving late-night talk shows and Democratic campaigns more fodder. We’ve seen this story before.
Christine “I Am Not a Witch” O’Donnell became a laughingstock and a Saturday Night Live skit and set back the Delaware Republican Party for years. Todd “Legitimate Rape” Aiken blew an easy Senate election and became the poster boy for the GOP’s “war on women.”
Roy Moore: Hold my beer ...
Moore is twice as awful as any of these previous candidates, and in a political environment already made toxic by Donald Trump, the Republican Party may be done for in 12 months. Arizona Republican Sen. Jeff Flake just admitted as much on a hot mic.
If Republicans believed that Moore would play ball, vote with the party like a good soldier and be quiet, McConnell would have no problem with him. In fact, Republicans in Washington, D.C., would be publicly dragging every one of Moore’s accusers.
Which brings us to the Alabama voters themselves. Political pundits are cherry-picking polls that suggest Moore could actually lose to Jones because of this child-sex scandal. Don’t be fooled; these polls ain’t loyal.
Many “undecided” voters in Alabama are Moore voters too embarrassed to admit to a pollster that they’re still voting for him. Why doesn’t Jones have a chance? Simple. You know the only thing worse than voting for a pervert who preys on underage girls in Alabama? Voting for a Democrat.
Moore rose to power in Alabama claiming that he would hold the line against a Democratic Party that promoted Hollywood values, homosexuality, Black Lives Matter, abortion, immigrants and Muslims. To Alabama Republicans, the Democratic Party is an inherently immoral entity. In the mind of your average Alabama Republican voter, two consenting adult men having sex is more offensive than a grown 32-year-old man fondling a 14-year-old girl.
To them, a vote for a Democrat, any Democrat—even a “There were very fine people on both sides of the Civil War” Democrat like Doug Jones—is an open invitation to penis wedding cakes, Black Lives Matter Day at the local elementary school, the war on religion, the war on men—heck, Republicans think Democrats want to cancel Christmas more than Tommy from Power.
Republicans simply want power, and arguments about morals and values are just convenient buzzwords to be used or tossed aside when in pursuit of said power. That’s why McConnell can be silent about Trump’s accusers but want Moore to step down. That’s why Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey can say she believes the women who have accused Roy Moore, that there is no excuse or rationale for sexual assault, but follow that up with this:
“I believe in the Republican Party and what we stand for, and most important, we need to have a Republican in the United States Senate to vote on things like Supreme Court justices, other appointments the Senate has to confirm and make major decisions,” [emphasis mine] Ivey said. “And so that’s what I plan to do, is vote for the Republican nominee, Roy Moore.”
So that’s what the voters in Alabama are likely to do. Rationalize voting for Roy Moore because they want to keep Republicans in power. Thirty years ago, Moore was allegedly banned from a mall for being a pervert, and now it looks like he’s about to waltz into the second-most-powerful branch of U.S. government. Gotta love democracy.