- Roy Moore, the Alabama Republican nominee for Senate, is under fire after sexual misconduct allegations were published by The Washington Post on Thursday.
- A number of GOP senators have called upon Moore to drop out of the race if the allegations are true.
- Mitt Romney on Friday he believes the accuser who said she was 14 when Moore initiated a sexual encounter with her.
Mitt Romney, the former Republican presidential nominee and Massachusetts governor, weighed in on Friday on the sexual misconduct allegations facing Republican Senate nominee Roy Moore, urging him to drop out of the race.
“Innocent until proven guilty is for criminal convictions, not elections. I believe Leigh Corfman. Her account is too serious to ignore,” Romney wrote on Twitter. “Moore is unfit for office and should step aside.”
Corfman alleged in a Washington Post article published Thursday that Moore had initiated a sexual encounter with her when she was 14 and he was 32. She said he brought her to his home twice, and on the second visit took off her clothes and touched her over her bra and underpants, then forced her to touch him over his underwear.
Corfman was one of four women quoted in the Post’s story who said Moore pursued relationships with them when they were teenagers and he was in his 30s.
The allegations have rattled the Alabama race, prompting a slew of GOP senators, including Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, to publicly urge Moore to drop out of the election if the accusations are true.
The “if true” qualifier that many senators have used in their statements denouncing Moore has prompted speculation over how the women’s allegations can be further proven, and what Republicans should do about Moore’s candidacy if such proof is impossible to obtain.
Notably, Sen. John McCain of Arizona was one of the few Republicans who issued a statement that did not express doubt over whether the accusations were true, and called upon Moore to immediately drop out.
“The allegations against Roy Moore are deeply disturbing and disqualifying,” he said in a statement. “He should immediately step aside and allow the people of Alabama to elect a candidate they can be proud of.”
GOP officials in Alabama, meanwhile, have remained supportive of Moore, with some questioning whether the women’s accounts are true, and others saying they will continue to support Moore’s candidacy even if they are.
Moore has denied the allegations and accused the Post and the Democratic Party of waging a “desperate political attack” against him.