Answering calls to clear his name, senate candidate Judge Roy Moore penned a letter to media host Sean Hannity defending himself against allegations of sexual misconduct and even attempted rape. Republican leaders have called for his removal and official party fundraising channels have closed, though Moore may make up the difference as indignant supporters double down on their contributions.
Hannity had issued an ultimatum for the judge to refute the accusations of five women.
“Here’s where I am tonight, between this interview that I did and inconsistent answers, between him saying I never knew this girl and then that yearbook comes out,” Hannity said. “For me, the judge has 24 hours. You must immediately and fully come up with a satisfactory explanation for your inconsistencies that I just showed. You must remove any doubt. If you can’t do this, then Judge Moore needs to get out of this race.”
The Judge answered the call in a letter, denying wrongdoing, asserting that parts of the purported evidence is fraudulent, and declaring it all a political smear campaign.
The letter is presented below in full:
I am suffering the same treatment other Republicans have had to endure.
A month prior to the general election for U.S. Senate in Alabama, I have been attacked by the Washington Post and other liberal media in a desperate attempt to smear my character and defeat my campaign.
Over the last 40 years I have held several public offices, including Deputy District Attorney, Circuit Judge, and Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court. In addition to running five statewide and three county campaigns for public office, I have been involved in two major controversies that attracted national attention, one about the Ten Commandments and the other the sanctity of marriage.
The Alabama Judicial Inquiry Commission, Court of the Judiciary, and Attorney General have investigated, scrutinized, examined, and vetted me, not to mention every opposing candidate against whom I have run.
I have been married for almost 33 years to my wife Kayla. We have four children and five granddaughters.
We are in the process of investigating these false allegations to determine their origin and motivation. For instance, we have documented that the most recent accuser, Beverly Nelson, was a party in a divorce action before me in Etowah County Circuit Court in 1999. No motion was made for me to recuse. In her accusations, Nelson did not mention that I was the judge assigned to her divorce case in 1999, a matter that apparently caused her no distress at a time that was 18 years closer to the alleged assault. Yet 18 years later, while talking before the cameras about the supposed assault, she seemingly could not contain her emotions.
My signature on the order of dismissal in the divorce case was annotated with the letters “D.A.,” representing the initials of my court assistant. Curiously the supposed yearbook inscription is also followed by the same initials—”D.A.” But at that time I was Deputy District Attorney, not district attorney. Those initials as well as the date under the signature block and the printed name of the restaurant are written in a style inconsistent with the rest of the yearbook inscription. The “7’s” in “Christmas 1977” are in a noticeably different script than the “7’s” in the date “12-22-77.” I believe tampering has occurred.
Are we at a stage in American politics in which false allegations can overcome a public record of 40 years, stampede the media and politicians to condemn an innocent man, and potentially impact the outcome of an election of national importance? When allegations of events occurring 40 years ago—and never before mentioned during a 40-year career of public service—are brought out and taken seriously only 30 days before a critical election, we may be in trouble as a country.
I adamantly deny the allegations of Leigh Corfman and Beverly Nelson, did not date underage girls, and have taken steps to begin a civil action for defamation. Because of that, at the direction of counsel, I cannot comment further.
Make what you will of the allegations and Moore’s proclamation of innocence, that ultimate decision is for the voter of Alabama. Current polls range from Moore being way down to a toss up in a deep red state, but Alabamans could tire of the national peanut gallery and reassert their primacy in this decision.
Win or lose, the race will have national implications politically and mathematically as a weak senate majority clings to power with a lot of ground to make up for leading into 2018 elections.