Less than two days after Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey stood outside the governor’s mansion and told reporters that she would vote for U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore despite multiple accusations of sexual crimes against him, three major newspapers in the state have called for voters to ditch the former judge in the upcoming election.
The editorial appeared Sunday in The Birmingham News, the Mobile Press-Register, The Huntsville Times, and online at AL.com.
It called the Dec. 12 vote a “turning point for women in Alabama” and a “chance to make their voices heard in a state that has silenced them for too long.”
AL.com’s vice president of content, Michelle Holmes, explained the joint editorial to CNNMoney by saying, “This is an important moment in Alabama and America, and we felt such treatment was in line with what is at stake in this race.”
The newspapers admonished members of the state’s Republican Party, who continue to steadfastly support Moore’s bid for the Senate despite allegations that he preyed upon girls as young as 14 when he was in his 30s.
Every day new allegations arise that illustrate a pattern of a man in his 30s strutting through town like the cock of the walk, courting and preying on young women and girls. And though Roy Moore has denied the accusations of these women, his own platform and record is hostile to so many Alabamians.
Unlike the national party, the Alabama Republican establishment has chosen to stand by him, attacking and belittling the brave women who have come forward.
The seriousness of Moore’s alleged behavior, the editorial noted, “cannot be overstated.” And addressing one of the arguments by Moore’s supporters, the newspapers said that “proof beyond a reasonable doubt is a consideration for the courtroom, not the ballot box.”
It also sought to remove the issue from the national media and political landscape it has occupied in recent weeks and to frame it as a crucial local—and even personal—issue for many AL voters.
Alabamians have never cared about what the rest of country thinks of them. And we do not expect all the handwringing from national pundits, conservative or liberal, to make much of a difference. This election isn’t about what a late-night comedian may think of Alabama or whether Sean Hannity can sell advertisements; it’s not about Saturday Night Live or Mitch McConnell. It’s not about Breitbart or National Democrats. It is about the moral values of the people of Alabama.
Do not make your voting decision based on who it will affect on a national stage. Vote based on who it will affect in your hometown.
The editorial finished with a compelling endorsement of Moore’s challenger, Democratic candidate Doug Jones, portraying him as a moderate, religious man who comes from a family that “understands the concerns facing working class families.”
“By the various misdeeds, miscalculations and mistakes of its voters and leaders, Alabama has left itself with few options. Alabamians must show themselves to be people of principle, reject Roy Moore and all that he stands for,” the newspapers stated.