Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Credit: Gage Skidmore / Flickr
More than 85,000 people have signed a petition demanding that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell “take a public stand against Roy Moore.”
Moore, the Republican candidate in a special election for one of Alabama’s Senate seats, is mired in allegations that he sexually abused a 14-year-old girl and, while in his 30s, dated teenagers aged between 16 and 18.
The notoriously anti-LGBTQ Moore denies the allegations, which were revealed in a Washington Post article last week.
The petition was launched by CREDO Action, a “social change network” that campaigns for progressive change, and calls out Republicans for ignoring sexual assault allegations against Donald Trump while he was campaigning to be president.
“Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other Republicans were quick to say that Moore should step aside ‘if the allegations are true,'” the petition reads. “But coming from the Party that helped put a sexual predator in the White House, those are empty words.
“When tape leaked of Donald Trump boasting about how easy it was for him to sexually assault women, senate Republicans denounced him – but then pulled a 180 after the election. That’s why we must demand that they reject another alleged sexual predator in their ranks and commit to repudiate Roy Moore if he is elected next month.”
The petition highlights that, after the allegations against Moore came to light, his Republican allies in Alabama rallied around him, such as Geneva County chairman Riley Seibenhener saying, “Other than [the victim] being with an underage person — [Moore] didn’t really force himself.”
And the Toronto Star reports that Republican officials in the state would still vote for Moore, even if the allegations were true.
“Clearly partisan politics and their extreme right-wing agenda matters more to Moore and his lackeys than the damage he’s caused as a sexual predator, but Moore’s commitment to staying in the race puts the spotlight back on Republican leaders like McConnell,” the petition continues.
“If McConnell really cared about interrupting an entrenched culture of misogyny that lets men get away with demeaning, harassing, objectifying and assaulting women, he would announce now that he will not ever welcome Moore as a member of his caucus.”
The allegations against Moore stand in contrast to his years spent railing against LGBTQ people, including calling homosexuality a “criminal lifestyle.” Moore even called homosexuality an “inherent evil against which children must be protected” — which smacks of hypocrisy, given the allegations against him.
In addition, he has compared homosexuality to bestiality, polygamy and incest, and supported banning all LGBTQ people from serving in the U.S. military.
Last week, before the Post article was published, he attacked his Democrat opponent Doug Jones for supporting LGBTQ people, telling a press conference “the transgenders don’t have rights.”
And, if that wasn’t enough, he was removed from his position as Chief Justice for trying to defy the Supreme Court’s ruling on same sex marriage and continue denying marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
For prior reporting on Roy Moore, click here.