One of the stranger aspects of the sexual-predator scandal that has suddenly engulfed Judge Roy Moore’s U.S. Senate campaign involves the widely varying defenses his camp has offered.
The judge himself is, for the moment, in total outrage mode:
“These allegations are completely false and are a desperate political attack by the National Democrat Party and the Washington Post on this campaign,” Moore said in a statement obtained by Breitbart News.
His campaign was a bit more elaborate:
Judge Roy Moore has endured the most outlandish attacks on any candidate in the modern political arena, but this story in today’s Washington Post alleging sexual impropriety takes the cake. National liberal organizations know their chosen candidate Doug Jones is in a death spiral, and this is their last ditch Hail Mary.
You will notice both statements avoid addressing any specifics.
The same goes for a fundraising appeal the judge sent out today. It did, however, raise the stakes on the allegations, attributing it not just to the lying fake-news media and the baby-killing socialists of the Democratic Party, but to Ole Lucifer and his hellish minions.
The Obama-Clinton machine’s liberal media lapdogs have just launched the most vicious and nasty attacks against me I’ve EVER faced.
I won’t get into the details of their filthy and sleazy attacks.
I refuse to repeat their lies.
The forces of evil are on the march in this country.
We are in the midst of a spiritual battle with those who want to silence our message.
“Spiritual warfare” is a conservative evangelical meme that enables Christian Right folk to equate earthly opponents with demonic supernatural forces. It’s revealing that the judge and his campaign are Going There so quickly. It is very much a last resort.
But an even more interesting religious defense of the judge was offered by Alabama state auditor Jim Ziegler, as reported by the Washington Examiner:
“He’s clean as a hound’s tooth,” Ziegler claimed, before relying on Scripture to defend Moore.
“Take the Bible. Zachariah and Elizabeth for instance. Zachariah was extremely old to marry Elizabeth and they became the parents of John the Baptist,” Ziegler said choosing his words carefully before invoking Christ. “Also take Joseph and Mary. Mary was a teenager and Joseph was an adult carpenter. They became parents of Jesus.”
Seems “national liberal organizations” aren’t the only ones trying a Hail Mary.
When I was growing up as a Southern Baptist, the virgin birth of Jesus was one of the fundamentals taken as literal gospel truth. I don’t know that Ziegler wants to go down the road of suggesting that the behavior Moore was accused of was conducted as part of the domestic life of the Holy Family. And there is the little problem that preying on underage girls runs afoul of the laws of Alabama even if Ziegler thinks the Bible condones it, though it’s true Moore has a habit of using the latter to defy the former.
A more lawyerly excuse was offered by Breitbart News’ Joel Pollack, suggesting three of the four allegations aren’t so bad:
So I guess a prosecutor hitting on teenage girls — one of whom he first “approached” when she was a 14-year-old Santa’s helper at the mall — should be taken out of the equation.
The most honest response in defense of Moore was this one from a county GOP leader in Alabama:
Charles Pierce is probably not the only observer who thinks Moore will at some point throw himself on the mercy of the good Christian people of his state:
[I]f Moore has the sand for it, he will follow this up with an explanation of how he had sinned, as all fallen humans do, but that Jesus has forgiven him and washed him in the blood of the Lamb, and now it’s time for him to bring his redeemed hindquarters to godless Washington to show the heathen the path to glory that he’s been blessed to follow. That might work.
With each denial of culpability and each association of his accusers with Satan, Moore is making any later tearful confession of mere sinful human failing unlikely. And even if he manages to execute an about-face and to elicit expressions of forgiveness for his behavior, it’s doubtful Alabamans are going to want someone in the Senate who is as creepy as the Post story paints him as being when he was a grown-up prosecutor looking for love in exactly the wrong places.