Alabama’s largest newspaper published a scathing editorial Monday afternoon, calling for the GOP to withdraw its official support for Roy Moore, the controversial Republican nominee for the state’s open U.S. Senate seat.
“We believe these women,” The Birmingham News’ editorial board wrote of the women accusing Moore of sexual misconduct when he was in his 30s and they were teenagers.
Earlier on Monday, a fifth woman came forward to say Moore sexually abused her when she was 16 and he was more than a decade older.
“The seriousness of these incidents cannot be overstated,” the paper’s editorial says. The Birmingham News conducted its own investigation into the allegations leveled at Moore and found no reason to doubt them.
“If anything, the stories we’ve heard in Etowah County have only further corroborated them,” the paper added.
A growing number of Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) and Sens. Lindsey Graham (S.C.) and Susan Collins (Maine), have called for Moore, who has denied the allegations, to leave the race.
McConnell supported Moore’s competitor in the Republican primary. Former White House strategist Steve Bannon, who has been backing Republican candidates and hopes to unseat McConnell from his leadership position, supported Moore.
The Birmingham News told its readers that Moore is “grossly unfit” to serve as a U.S. senator and has been even before the recent allegations of sexual misconduct surfaced.
“It’s time that he and his party read the writing on the wall: His candidacy is over,” the editorial board wrote. “His true character has been revealed. It’s time for the GOP to remove its official support.”