Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and several other Republican senators said on Thursday that if allegations of misconduct are true, Alabama Senate Republican candidate Judge Roy Moore should drop out of the race.
The Washington Post released a story on Thursday alledging that Roy Moore initiated a sexual encounter with a 14-year-old girl when he was 32, as well as other cases of sexual misconduct.
In a written statement, Moore denied the allegations.
“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.
Axios has compiled the calls for Moore to step aside.
Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said, “If these allegations are true, he must step aside.”
Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) argued, “If there is any shred of truth to the allegations against Roy Moore, he should step aside immediately.”
Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) said, “If there is any truth at all to these horrific allegations, Roy Moore should immediately step aside as a Senate candidate.”
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) said, “I’m horrified and if this is true he needs to step down immediately.” Murkowski also said that she spoke to Luther Strange about becoming a write-in challenger to oppose Moore in the December 12 election.
Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) said, “It was very troubling … if what we read is true and people are on the record so I assume it is,” adding that “Moore should step aside.”
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) tweeted on Thursday, “The allegations against Roy Moore are deeply disturbing and disqualifying. He should immediately step aside and allow the people of Alabama to elect a candidate they can be proud of.”
Roy Moore defeated Sen. Luther Strange (R-AL) in the primary run-off in September to replace former Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), who now serves as U.S. attorney general.
The Roy Moore campaign said in a subsequent statement that if the allegations were true, they would have surfaced during his previous campaigns. “This garbage is the very definition of fake news,” he added.