Doug Jones Beats Accused Pervert Roy Moore To Become Alabama’s First Democrat In 2 Decades

By DailyNews.com

Doug Jones pulled off a major upset victory in Alabama’s special election Tuesday against Republican Roy Moore, becoming the first Democrat to win a Senate seat in the red state in more than 20 years and delivering a jolt of energy to his party ahead of the 2018 midterms.

The neck-and-neck race, which at one point had Moore up by thousands of votes, came down to the wire — and ended with a major embarrassment for President Trump, who embraced the embattled Republican despite a torrent of lurid allegations about sexual misconduct with teenage girls.

Alabama residents surged to the polls, with an estimated 38% of the state’s registered voters casting more than 1 million votes — a far bigger turnout than the 20% to 25% originally predicted.

Jones, 63, fared well among black voters, who made up about 28% of the ballot casters, while Moore, 70, scored higher among rural white voters, exit polls showed.

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The election was called for the Democrat about 2 1/2 hours after polls closed at 8 p.m. — setting off a raucous victory party for Jones and his supporters.

Jones captured 49.9% of the vote to Moore’s 48.4%. A difference of roughly 20,000 votes separated the two men at the end.

“Dec. 12 has always been a historic day for the Jones family,” a beaming Jones said during his speech, as he turned to his wife.

Doug Jones greets supporters during his victorious election night gathering the Sheraton Hotel in Birmingham, Ala.

Doug Jones greets supporters during his victorious election night gathering the Sheraton Hotel in Birmingham, Ala.

(JUSTIN SULLIVAN/GETTY IMAGES)

“This is, as you know, mine and Louise’s 25th wedding anniversary. I couldn’t have done this without her. The love, the support, the encouragement,” he said as hundreds of his backers cheered and danced.

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Still in shock over his unprecedented upset, Jones struggled to get his words out at first.

“I think that I have been waiting all my life, and now I just don’t know what the hell to say,” he said, before moving on to message of positivity for his deeply-divided state.

“We have shown not just around the state of Alabama, but we have shown the country the way — that we can be unified,” Jones declared.

Over at Moore’s much more somber affair in downtown Montgomery, the former Alabama judge told the crowd he wasn’t ready to concede.

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“It’s not over,” Moore said. “We know that God is still in control.”

Republican candidate Roy Moore speaks during a campaign rally in Midland City, Ala. on Monday. 

Republican candidate Roy Moore speaks during a campaign rally in Midland City, Ala. on Monday.

(JONATHAN BACHMAN/REUTERS)

Under Alabama law an automatic recount is triggered if the margin of victory is less than one-half of one percentage point. With all precincts reporting, Jones led by 1.5 points — three times that margin.

If the secretary of state determines there were more write-in votes than the difference between Jones and Moore, the state’s counties would be required to tally those votes — which hovered around 22,000.

But while that might alter the margin of victory, it wasn’t clear the change would be sufficient to force a recount.

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Trump made a point of mentioning the write-in votes in his congratulatory tweet from the White House.

“Congratulations to Doug Jones on a hard fought victory. The write-in votes played a very big factor, but a win is a win. The people of Alabama are great, and the Republicans will have another shot at this seat in a very short period of time. It never ends!” he wrote.

It was a far more moderate message than his last tweet about the Senate race, in which he labeled Jones “Pro-Abortion, weak on Crime, Military and Illegal Immigration, Bad for Gun Owners and Veterans and against the WALL. Jones is a Pelosi/Schumer Puppet.”

MANDATORY CREDIT; NO LICENSING EXCEPT BY AP COOPERATIVE MEMBERS

Roy Moore rides a horse to a polling station to cast his ballot in Alabama’s special Senate election, Thursday, Dec. 12, 2017, in Gallant, Ala.

(ALBERT CESARE/AP)

He ended by exclaiming that “Roy Moore will always vote with us. VOTE ROY MOORE!”

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Jones’ narrow win means the Republican majority over Democrats in the Senate drops to a slim 51 to 49. It will also further galvanize the Democratic Party as it looks to build on sentiment against President Trump to mount a challenge next year to the Republican control of Congress.

The bitter political battle centered around fiery conservative Moore, who had to deny allegations that he molested several teen girls — including one as young as 14 — while he was a thirty-something prosecutor in the late 1970s.

Moore donned a large, black cowboy hat and rode his horse Sassy to his polling site to cast his vote.

Republicans in D.C. had already circled the wagons and were planning a strategy session on Wednesday on how to handle Moore if he had won.

An attorney and former prosecutor, Jones rallied voters on a message of moving past the Moore controversies. An influx of national Democratic cash and endorsements helped propel his last-minute victory.

Voters wait in line to cast their ballot at a polling station setup in the St. Thomas Episcopal Church on Tuesday in Birmingham, Ala.

Voters wait in line to cast their ballot at a polling station setup in the St. Thomas Episcopal Church on Tuesday in Birmingham, Ala.

(JOE RAEDLE/GETTY IMAGES)

The two men were battling for an open Senate seat that was up for grabs after Jeff Sessions was appointed attorney general by President Trump. The term expires in January 2021.

Both Trump and the Republican National Committee had waded into the murky waters of Alabama politics in recent weeks to endorse Moore — despite opposition from many in the GOP.

Trump, after weeks of silence, threw himself whole-heartedly behind the candidate last week, tweeting that Moore “will always vote with us.”

The President then held a rally in Pensacola, Fla., on Friday, only 20 miles from the Alabama border, where he sang Moore’s praises and blasted Jones. Steve Bannon, his former White House chief strategist and architect of Trump’s presidential run, had also gone all-in for Moore, stumping for him in Alabama.

The stakes were high for Alabama and the Republican Party, just as the GOP prepares to defend its congressional majorities in 2018.

A number of Republicans declined to support Moore, including Alabama’s long-serving Sen. Richard Shelby.

A President Trump endorsement wasn't enough for Moore to win the special election. 

A President Trump endorsement wasn’t enough for Moore to win the special election.

(MANDEL NGAN/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)

Arizona Republican Sen. Jeff Flake, who rejected Moore and had donated money to Jones’ campaign, on Tuesday night tweeted “Decency wins.”

Moore, a conservative Christian, was already known for advocating discrimination against the LGBTQ community.

Jones is a former U.S. attorney known for prosecuting a pair of Klansmen decades after they killed four black girls in a church bombing.

Last month The Washington Post reported that Moore initiated sexual contact with then-14-year-old Leigh Corfman in 1979.

Another woman, Beverly Young Nelson said the then-thirtysomething prosecutor was brutal and predatory to her when she was a teen.

Nelson recounted how Moore, a regular customer at the restaurant where she worked, once offered her a ride home. He parked the car behind the restaurant, next to a dumpster, and attacked her. He tried to force her head into his lap and tear off her clothes, she said.

Doug Jones casts his ballot Tuesday in Mountain Brook, Ala.

Doug Jones casts his ballot Tuesday in Mountain Brook, Ala.

(JOHN BAZEMORE/AP)

Moore denied the allegations and refused to quit the race despite pressure from some within his party.

“I believe the women,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, of Kentucky, said.

Moore was twice fired as Alabama Supreme Court chief justice, once for refusing to remove a statue of the Ten Commandments from a courthouse and a second time for refusing to recognize gay marriage.

Moore has also said that 9/11 may have been a result of God being upset with America.

Jones “was a great candidate and will be an even better senator,” said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.). “Roy Moore was an awful candidate.”

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