The Alabama Senate race appears to be reverting to a fundamental political truth: A state that is one of the most Republican in the nation is likely to vote Republican.

There’s still the possibility of some new and devastating sexual misconduct revelation about GOP candidate Roy Moore. But there’s an increasing sense that the old and devastating sexual misconduct revelations are receding into the distant past of two weeks ago.

It appears the improvement in Moore’s fortunes is being driven by a gradual change in the Alabama electorate’s view of the allegations against him.

Part of the change seems to be that many voters don’t view Moore’s accusers in the same way that many media figures do. Media reports portray overwhelming evidence against Moore. The message is that the sheer number of accusers means at least some must be telling the truth.

But it seems likely that some Alabama voters don’t see nine accusers. They see one.

That one accuser is Leigh Corfman, who says Moore sexually assaulted her in 1979, when she was 14 years old. Published in The Washington Post, Corfman’s was the first and most serious allegation against Moore, and it remains the most serious today. Corfman has seemed credible in media appearances, and Moore has not been able to refute her story.

But the Post account also included the stories of three other women who said Moore asked them out when they were 16, 17 and 18 years old, and whose cases against Moore did not involve any physical abuse or coercion.

Then there was Beverly Young Nelson, who said Moore assaulted her in 1977, when she was 16. Nelson made the mistake of retaining celebrity lawyer Gloria Allred when she made her allegations, and she also mishandled Moore’s contention that a signature in a yearbook she produced, ostensibly by Moore, might be a fake. Both moves reduced her credibility.

So that is five accusers right there. It is likely that voters pushed four of them to the side, leaving Corfman.

Then there was a woman who said Moore grabbed her behind in 1991, when she was 28. A woman who said Moore asked her out in 1982, when she was 17. A woman who said Moore asked her out repeatedly in 1977, when she was 18, and gave her an unwanted, “forceful” kiss. And finally, a woman who said Moore asked her out several times in 1977, when she was 22.

Asked her out several times when she was 22 years old? That’s not the most outrageous allegation in the news these days. Four more accusers, some with very thin stories.

That makes nine. The point is not that none of the accusers is telling the truth. Perhaps some, or all, are. What appears to have happened is that one very serious allegation was followed by a series of less serious, or less credible, accusations that in the end did not have the cumulative effect that Moore’s opponents perhaps hoped.

The bottom line is, instead of Roy Moore versus nine accusers, in many voters’ minds, the story is Roy Moore versus one accuser, Leigh Corfman. And that is where the mental calculations begin.

Corfman’s allegation is serious; she was, after all, 14 years old. But it’s not airtight. And it was in 1979 — 38 years ago. Memories fade, or change. And even if it is all true, has Moore changed in the nearly four decades since?

Finally, many conservative voters see Jones as a doctrinaire liberal whose pro-abortion rights views on abortion would likely be enough to ensure defeat in an Alabama race. And so Alabama Republicans are more and more assessing the situation as Alabama Republicans. It would be no surprise if they vote that way Tuesday.

Byron York is a nationally syndicated columnist.

(44) comments

Emile Pope

Apologist garbage...

Carlos Ponce

Emile, a word of advice. Decrying everything you disagree with as "garbage" is not very scholarly. If you disagree state the reason why. Merely proclaiming it as "garbage" desn't make your point.

Emile Pope

I'm not a scholar. And I have better things to do than to waste time proving things to people that they already know.

Carlos Ponce

Your loss, Emile. Many will dismiss your post due to lack of elaboration.

Carlos Ponce

"Why the Alabama race is shifting in Moore's favor "
Easy to figure out. If voters vote for Roy Moore and it is determined he is guilty of the allegations then the Senate hierarchy can have hearings and not seat him in January or if already seated they, Alabama's Governor and the people of Alabama can ask that he resign. The Republican Governor of Alabama can then assign another Republican to occupy the Senate seat until a special election can be held. If there is no proof of the allegations, why go after the man? An allegation is not the same as guilt.
If on the other hand Doug Jones wins then they're stuck with a Liberal Senator who does not reflect the views of the Alabama populace.
Did you happen to see Doug Jones' racist anti-Moore ad saying that no one would vote for a Black accused of the same allegations?
“Think if a black man went after high school girls, anyone would try to make him a senator?”
Not very nice and African-Americans are offended.
http://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/national/article188675124.html

Steve Fouga

Carlos says: "If on the other hand Doug Jones wins then they're stuck with a Liberal Senator WHO DOES NOT REFLECT THE VIEWS OF THE ALABAMA POPULACE."

^ ^ ^ ^ ^ Exactly. Alabama is simply a very red state, and even if voters disagree with something Roy Moore did in the past, they share most of his values in the present. They do not share his opponent's values, so it's likely they'll vote for Moore.

Emile Pope

Voting for an intolerant bigot because you claim they have "christian values" is the ultimate in hypocrisy. Apparently voting for the guy who prosecuted the klansmen who blew up a church and killed four little girls is beyond their conscience...

Jim Forsythe

Steve, I think it may be a very few votes that determine the race. Some are now saying, they will write-in Nick Saban,” .
If it is close, they will not count the write-in votes for seven days.
One never knows ,until the counting is done.
Expected turn out?
Somewhere between 950,000 to 1 million voters will show up to the polls.

Some other reasons people may not vote for Moore. 
May 2011 episode of Aroostook Watchmen,
"he told the hosts in an interview that getting rid of constitutional amendments after the Tenth Amendment would 'eliminate many problems' in the way the US government is structured"
"Moore cited the 17th Amendment, which calls for the direct election of senators by voters rather than state legislatures, as one he particularly found troublesome."
"Moore replied. "The danger in the 14th Amendment, which was to restrict, it has been a restriction on the states using the first Ten Amendments by and through the 14th Amendment. To restrict the states from doing something that the federal government was restricted from doing and allowing the federal government to do something which the first Ten Amendments prevented them from doing. If you understand the incorporation doctrine used by the courts and what it meant. You'd understand what I'm talking about."

"Moore also faced criticism for comments he made in September at a campaign rally. According to the Los Angeles Times,  when asked by a black member of the audience when he thought the last time America was great, Moore answered, "I think it was great at the time when families were united — even though we had slavery — they cared for one another. Our families were strong, our country had a direction."

Removed from the bench two times.
.At the heart of its decision to oust Moore was the court's unanimous view that he had not been "credible" when he denied ordering state probate judges to withhold licenses for same-sex marriages. The court focused on Moore's "misleading" statements and "intentional omission." It said Moore's 2016 assertion "that his actions and words mean something other than what they clearly express is not a new strategy." The unanimous nine-member court referred to Moore's arguments in 2003 -- and an earlier ouster from the bench -- related to a huge granite monument of the Ten Commandments he installed at the state courthouse.


Sen. Cory Gardner of Colorado, chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, told the Weekly Standard on Thursday, “Roy Moore will never have the support of the senatorial committee. We will never endorse him. We won’t support him. I won’t let that happen.”

Carlos Ponce

"...an earlier ouster from the bench -- related to a huge granite monument of the Ten Commandments he installed at the state courthouse." 2003
But in June 27, 2005, the Supreme Court ruled that a 10 Commandments monument in Austin, Texas at the state capital could remain (Van Orden v. Perry 2005). The Austin 10 Commandments was not as huge - looks like size does matter.[wink]
Note: the Austin 10 commandments monument (1961) is similar to the Galveston 10 Commandments monument (1957), difference in material and the Galveston monument has its commandments numbered.
When Roy Moore lived in Galveston he learned karate from Ishmael Robles.
http://www.al.com/news/index.ssf/2017/11/roy_moores_former_kickboxing_i.html
http://www.galvnews.com/news/free/article_b9fb0e3d-4a58-50c4-bd29-42d4cba89d3f.html

Steve Fouga

Emile and Jim, just to be perfectly clear, there's no way I personally would vote for Roy Moore, even if I were a diehard Republican. I just don't trust 50% of Alabamians to feel the same. Jim, it does sound like it will be incredibly close. There are plenty of good reasons NOT to vote for Mr. Moore.

Doyle Beard

yep as many as Clinton the second time around but that did not happen either

Gary Scoggin

The fact that the same people supporting Roy Moore are those that worried about keeping young girls same from transgendered folks in women’s restrooms just drips with irony. Or hypocrisy.

Carlos Ponce

"are those that worried about keeping young girls same (sic) from transgendered folks in women’s restrooms"
That's not their belief, Gary. They have no problem with actual transgendered people using the restroom appropriate to their sexual reassignment. They have problems with sexual deviants taking advantage of the "open door" on restrooms policy some propose. Media falsely reported efforts to stop these invasions of women's privacy and attacks on women as being against transsexuals.
Instances:
"Police: Man attacks 6-year-old girl in women’s bathroom"
http://wishtv.com/2016/02/09/man-attacks-6-year-old-girl-in-womens-bathroom/
"Man in Barbie costume attacks woman in bathroom"
http://fox5sandiego.com/2014/03/02/man-in-barbie-costume-attacks-woman-in-bathroom/
"The attack by a man on an 8-year-old girl in a women’s restroom last week in a Chicago restaurant is raising alarm about opposite-sex access to public facilities in the name of transgender rights."
https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/may/14/man-who-choked-girl-in-womens-restroom-stokes-alar/
"According to a probable cause statement obtained by KBTX, Tawakkol admitted to being in the women's restroom and using his phone to take a 49 second video of the woman urinating," the station reported on its website. This happened at Texas A&M and the Air Force Academy.
http://gazette.com/air-force-academy-cadet-jailed-after-bathroom-peeping-allegations/article/1599548
"Durham police seek man who took photo of girl in bathroom stall"
http://www.wral.com/durham-police-seek-man-who-took-photo-of-girl-in-bathroom-stall/16734580/
"Police: Man videoed woman underneath McDonald’s bathroom stall"
http://www.wlky.com/article/police-man-videoed-woman-underneath-mcdonald-s-bathroom-stall/3745809
"Man Videotaped Women in Bathroom Stalls at UConn Law Library"
https://www.nbcconnecticut.com/news/local/Man-Accused-of-Videotaping-Women-in-Bathroom-Stalls-at-UConn-Library-397611581.html
Laws will not prevent any attacks or invasion of privacy but when caught the laws will make them pay for it.

Emile Pope

More hogwash. Changing the intentions of lawmakers to justify their intolerance is just sad.

Carlos Ponce

No hogwash, Emile. Check the legislative bills for intent and the author's of the bills for intent. The media made it into an anti-transsexual issue.
For example the author of Texas' SB 6 was Lois Kolkhorst says the Privacy Act was not aimed at Transsexuals. Huffington, Politifact, Texas Tribune and other über Leftist media says it does.
Read " 'Bathroom bill’ protects privacy of women and children" By SB 6 author Lois W. Kolkhorst
http://www.star-telegram.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/other-voices/article136307273.html

Emile Pope

There were already laws in place. Just pandering to the bigoted base...

Carlos Ponce

"There were already laws in place. " That must mean there was no need for "hate crimes bill" legislation since there were already laws in place, right?

Emile Pope

More false equivalency garbage...

Carlos Ponce

I smell hypocrisy, Emile.

Doyle Beard

totally wrong

David Doe

Opinions aside, the good folks of Alabama will decide. No one else matters.
I didn't believe Clinton should have been elected a 2nd term but he was.

Diane Turski

If Moore becomes a senator, it will be yet another sad and shameful example of voting party over country!!

Carlos Ponce

Diane, in voting for Bill Clinton after allegations of sexual misconduct including rape did Democrats vote party over country?
Or was their vote based on the fact that these were mere "allegations" at the time?

Emile Pope

More false equivalency garbage...

Carlos Ponce

What's false, Emile? Allegations were made against Bill Clinton. TRUE!
People still voted for Bill Clinton despite these allegations. TRUE
Allegations are being made against Roy Moore. TRUE.
Will people still vote for Roy Moore? That's to be seen.
If you consider that people put party over country in Roy Moore's case then you have to believe people put party over country in Bill Clinton's elections.
I personally believe that people will consider these mere ALLEGATIONS as they did when voting for Bill Clinton.

Jim Forsythe

"another sad and shameful example of voting party over country"

Casey Alan

Why is it when people have nothing to say they go way back. Try to overlook what’s happening today by concentrating on the past. This man was banned from the mall that’s pretty scary. Even if you chose not to believe these allegations you shouldn’t vote for this man because of what he said about gays and other races. In this particular case party is being chose over country. People are stepping down people From whatever position they may hold Others are being fired for the same allegations of this misconduct but yet it’s OK for him to hold office? So very sad.

Carlos Ponce

"This man was banned from the mall that’s pretty scary." The mall manager says that is not true.

Emile Pope

The republicans always want to go back to the past. Roy Moore wants to go back to the 1800s...

Doyle Beard

bet you voted for Clinton 2 times although no way to prove other than all your liberal posts

Ron Binkley

The bottom line is that a grown man should have known better than asking any 15, 16 or 17 year old girl out on a date. I'm sure his intentions were not pure. It's statutory rape!

Carlos Ponce

Now that's a leap, from allegations of asking for a date to allegations of statutory rape.

Emile Pope

A thirty+ year old man hanging around malls trying to pick up high school girls is nauseating. Plus his being kicked out of office for refusing to obey the law and perform his job should be a deal breaker. Apparently obeying the law is optional for some people...

Doyle Beard

like billy boy lying to GJ.

Carlos Ponce

"...hanging around malls trying to pick up high school girls" The mall manager said it did not happen.
Kicked out of office .....first for supporting a 10 Commandments monument. The 2005 Supreme Court case, Van Orden vs. Perry found that the 10 Commandments monument on Texas Capital grounds was legal. There is also a 10 Commandments monument on public grounds in Galveston. The second ouster came when he tried to enforce Alabama law and orders from the Alabama Supreme Court banning marriage certificates to same-sex couples.

Emile Pope

That's not what the manager said...

Carlos Ponce

Did you read the ENTIRE report on what the mall manager said, Emile?

Emile Pope

Unless you can show that he wasn't hanging out at the mall go away. Unless you can show that he wasn't dating teenagers at the age of thirty then go away...

Carlos Ponce

Gee, Emile, that's not very nice. Take a chill pill.

Dan Freeman

Today RCP:
Alabama Senate Special Election - Moore vs. Jones Monmouth Moore 46, Jones 46 Tie
Alabama Senate Special Election - Moore vs. Jones FOX News Moore 40, Jones 50 Jones +10
Alabama Senate Special Election - Moore vs. Jones Emerson Moore 53, Jones 44 Moore +9
The truth is in there!!

Steve Fouga

The Fox poll can't possibly be legit. They're just trying to get out the vote.

Emile Pope

Then they should have had the vote after the klan rally...

Ron Binkley

Does a man with this much controversy really need to be representing the citizens of this country?

Carlos Ponce

If the controversy is contrived......[rolleyes]

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