- People are digging up some controversial comments from Roy Moore, the Republican US Senate candidate in Alabama’s special election next week.
- They include Moore praising the era of slavery, saying America may be the focus of evil in the modern world, and claiming that young Americans are killing one another because they are taught the theory of evolution.
- Moore was already facing allegations that he pursued relationships and engaged in sexual misconduct with teenage girls when he was in his 30s.
A series of controversial comments from the embattled GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore began to resurface Thursday and have quickly gone viral online with the Alabama special election less than a week away.
Moore was already facing several allegations that he engaged in sexual misconduct with teenage girls when he was in his 30s. The comments that have emerged in the past day include Moore praising the era of slavery and Russian President Vladimir Putin. He also once linked drive-by shootings to the teaching of evolution in schools.
His comments on slavery resurfaced Thursday after Eric Columbus, a former official in President Barack Obama’s administration, tweeted them, garnering more than 8,000 retweets.
During a September rally in Florence, Alabama – a rally at which he also called Native Americans and Asians “reds and yellows” – Moore responded to a black man who asked when Moore thought America was most recently “great.”
Moore said it was during the era of slavery.
“I think it was great at the time when families were united,” Moore said, according to a September Los Angeles Times story. “Even though we had slavery, they cared for one another … Our families were strong – our country had a direction.”
Moore praised Vladimir Putin
The Reagan Battalion, a conservative group, separately tweeted out footage of an interview Moore conducted with The Guardian in August in which Moore praised Putin and suggested that America may be the focus of evil in the world.
The Guardian reporter interviewing Moore asked about Russia, noting that President Ronald Reagan once said the Soviet Union was “the focus of evil in the modern world.”
“Could say that very well about America, couldn’t you?” Moore responded. “Well, we promote a lot of bad things. Same-sex marriage.”
The reporter said that was “the very argument that Vladimir Putin makes.”
“Well, maybe Putin is right,” Moore said. “Maybe he is more akin to me than I know.”
The Reagan Battalion’s tweet showcasing the exchange has been retweeted roughly 6,000 times.
The final piece of resurfaced commentary came via CNN, which highlighted a speech Moore gave in 1997 criticising the theory of evolution.
“We have kids driving by shooting each other that they don’t even know each other,” he said. “They’re acting like animals because we’ve taught them they come from animals. They’re treating their fellow man with prejudice because we’ve taught them they have come from animals, not from God, who despises that sort of thing.”
The clip has been retweeted more than 15,000 times since Thursday afternoon.
The election is Tuesday
With the election just a few days away, Moore and his campaign have doubled and tripled down on attacking the women who accused him of sexual misconduct. Many of them have said the incidents happened while they were teenagers and he was in his 30s.
President Donald Trump, hours ahead of a Florida rally just minutes from the Alabama border, provided one of his strongest endorsements of the candidate Friday morning, telling Alabama voters to “VOTE ROY MOORE!”
“LAST thing the Make America Great Again Agenda needs is a Liberal Democrat in Senate where we have so little margin for victory already,” he tweeted, attacking Moore’s Democratic opponent, Doug Jones. “The Pelosi/Schumer Puppet Jones would vote against us 100% of the time. He’s bad on Crime, Life, Border, Vets, Guns & Military. VOTE ROY MOORE!”
The Republican National Committee reinstated its support for the candidate this week after Trump first endorsed him, while top GOP senators have eased off in their condemnations of Moore. Moore has also seen his polling numbers improve after falling behind Jones when the allegations that he preyed on teenagers first surfaced last month.
One of the most prominent allegations of sexual misconduct came from Beverly Young Nelson, who said Moore tried to sexually assault her when she was a teenager. Nelson told ABC News for the first time in an interview Friday that she wrote part of the message attached to a yearbook signature she said was from Moore.
Moore strongly denies that he wrote his signature in her yearbook in the 1970s, and she and her attorney, Gloria Allred, have planned a news conference Friday afternoon to address the matter.
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