Accused child molester Roy Moore was stunningly defeated last night in the Alabama Senate election to fill the seat left by Trump’s Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Quite frankly, it’s outrageous that a man who faced scandalous allegations of sexual contact with a 14-year-old when he was 32 and who once said ‘homosexual conduct should be illegal’ was even competitive in this race, let alone the heavy favourite.
Moore was defeated by 63-year-old Democrat Doug Jones – a man who built a reputation as a US attorney of vigorously prosecuting KKK members and fighting for civil rights in a state with a dark and troubled racial history. During the election, Jones even relied on the support of former president Barack Obama, who recorded voice messages for the candidate.
Jones immediately took to Twitter to thank the voters of the state in a tweet that’s already been shared more than 130,000 times. And the New York Daily News came up with a fantastic front page story celebrating the result.
And it appears it was Jones’ appeal to black voters that was crucial in securing his victory. In a result separated by around 20,000 votes, high turnout among African-Americans was a decisive factor in ensuring the defeat of Roy Moore, as shown by this Washington Post graphic:
A whopping 96% of black voters opted for Jones, while only 30% of white voters did. Indeed, white people overwhelmingly plumped for Moore - he received 68% of the white vote.
Reacting to the vote, doctor and commentator Rhea Boyd, MD said on twitter: “Thank you to the 97% of black women voters in Alabama who, despite being only 18% of the electorate, voted for #DougJones instead of Roy Moore. Love, The 94% of black women who voted for Hillary instead of Donald.”
Not only is this victory so stunning because it’s the first time a Democrat has won a statewide election in Alabama in decades, but it’s a humiliating rebuke of Donald Trump and his chief strategist Steve Bannon. Both Bannon and Trump - who have long been accused of exploiting racial politics and of out-right racism - were public supporters of Roy Moore during the campaign and it seems that voters rejected them.
So what does this all mean for Donald Trump?
This election result could be very dangerous for the President. It’s a validation that voters take sexual misconduct claims seriously, which could mean a reassessment of the many claims against Trump, who was infamously caught on tape bragging about ‘grabbing women by the pussy’:
And politically, Trump has now lost a Republican vote in the Senate which means it will now be harder to pass legislation like tax reform. Even worse for the President, it means the Democrats have another vote on their side if they decide to pursue impeachment charges against him.
So could this be the beginning of the end for Trump’s presidency? There’s another round of elections next year, so we’ve not got long to find out.