POLITICS

Donald Trump Warns Roy Moore 'Cannot Win' Alabama Senate Race

The president said the "consequences would be devastating" if the former judge challenges Democratic Sen. Doug Jones in 2020.

President Donald Trump on Wednesday warned that another bid by former Alabama judge Roy Moore for U.S. Senate next year could come at a significant cost to the Republican Party agenda. 

Although Moore lost his 2017 Senate race to Democrat Doug Jones after allegations of Moore’s sexual misconduct toward teen girls, he is considering another run for office in 2020, according to Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Ala.). The congressman told The Hill this week he’d heard the controversial ex-judge would announce his candidacy as soon as June.

“He knows that if I run I will beat Doug Jones,” Moore tweeted on Tuesday, referring to Byrne. 

The news was received with alarm by Trump, however, who tweeted that Moore’s entry into the race would mean the “incredible gains that we have made during my Presidency may be lost” ― including the confirmation of future Supreme Court nominees.

Still, Trump said he had “NOTHING against” Moore despite the credible allegations leveled against him, adding he “wanted him to win” in 2017.

The president’s son, Donald Trump Jr., was more blunt about the prospect of another Moore Senate bid.

“You’re literally the only candidate who could lose a GOP seat in pro-Trump, pro-USA ALABAMA. Running for office should never become a business model. If you actually care about #MAGA more than your own ego, it’s time to ride off into the sunset, Judge,” the younger Trump tweeted on Tuesday.

Jones, 59, is one of the most vulnerable Democratic incumbents this campaign cycle, fighting for re-election in a state Trump carried in 2016 by nearly 30 points. He initially ran for office in 2017 after former Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions (R) stepped down as senator to become Trump’s attorney general. In the Senate, he has voted mostly in line with other Democrats ― a record that could hurt him in the deep red state.

Former Alabama judge Roy Moore.
Former Alabama judge Roy Moore.

The controversial Moore, 72, had long been known for his conservative religious beliefs, opposing equal rights for Muslims and the LGBTQ community. One poll in April showed the former Alabama Supreme Court chief justice leading the field for the GOP Senate nomination in 2020.

Establishment Republicans in Washington have pledged to do everything they can to stop another Moore candidacy, fearing it could cost them their majority in 2020. Democrats need to pick up at least three seats to gain control of Congress’ upper chamber and have any hope of enacting the party’s agenda.

Moore continued teasing a possible run for Senate on Wednesday, however.

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