During a rambling, aggrieved speech in which he name-checked Robert Mueller, Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, and George Soros, Moore—who infamously lost the 2017 special election to Jones—painted himself as the victim of a global smear campaign who would nevertheless buck the overwhelming opposition to his candidacy and win in 2020.
Claiming that he’d like to focus on “more personal contact” with voters this time around (yikes), Moore reiterated his claims of innocence in the face of multiple allegations that he’d preyed on young women during the 1970s.
Moore saved much of his venom for the establishment Republican Party, which he blamed for pushing President Trump to oppose his second Senate run. In late May, Trump publicly urged Moore not to run; he staunchly supported Moore’s candidacy in 2017, even after multiple women accused Moore of sexual assault and harassment.
Now that Moore has officially declared his intent to run again, all eyes will turn to former Attorney General and—more pertinently—former Alabama senator Jeff Sessions, who has been reportedly thinking about recapturing his old seat.
“Sessions, I don’t think, has ruled [running for his old seat] out,” Alabama Sen. Richard Shelby told the Washington Post, when asked about the possibility that Sessions may join the Republican primary. “I’ve talked to him about it. I think if he ran, he would be a formidable candidate, formidable.”
In addition to the allegations of sexual assault, Moore’s 2017 campaign was punctuated by rampant homophobia, bizarre philo-semitism, and at least one instance of a burnished firearm. He has since gone on to sue comedian Sacha Baron Cohen after Cohen mocked him during a taping of his Who is America? for Showtime.