Roy Moore Is Using Allegations Of Child Molestation Against Him To Fundraise Senate Campaign

The former Alamaba Supreme Court justice is a vociferous opponent of LGBT rights.

After four women have accused Roy Moore of sexual misconduct, the GOP Senate hopeful didn’t just deny the accusations—he’s using them to garner donations to his campaign in Alabama.

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Several women claim Moore asked them on dates when they were between 16 and 18, according to The Washington Post. Leigh Corfman says Moore initiated a sexual encounter with her in 1979, when she was just 14.

Moore chatted with her and asked for her phone number, she says. Days later, she says, he picked her up around the corner from her house in Gadsden, drove her about 30 minutes to his home in the woods, told her how pretty she was and kissed her.

On a second visit, she says, he took off her shirt and pants and removed his clothes. He touched her over her bra and underpants, she says, and guided her hand to touch him over his underwear.

In a fundraising email to supporters this week, Moore claimed the “Obama-Clinton’s liberal media lapdogs” were behind the accusations.

“I believe you and I have a duty to stand up and fight back against the forces of evil waging an all-out war on our conservative values,” the email read. “So will you take a stand by chipping in a donation to let me know you’ve got my back in our all-out war against the Obama-Clinton Machine?”

The subject line in his email read “We are in a spiritual battle.”

Moore has gone on the record denying the accusations, which he says “are completely false and are a desperate political attack by the National Democrat Party and the Washington Post. While some GOP stalwarts in Alabama are standing by the former judge, Senate Majority Mitch McConnell has said, if the claims are true, he should step aside “for all the obvious reasons.”

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Moore edged out Luther Strange in the Alabama Republican Senate primary and will now face Democrat Doug Jones in the December 12 special election. His animosity toward the LGBT community stands out, even among Republicans: Moore was suspended as Chief Justice of the state Supreme Court (for the second time) last year because he instructed judges to continue enforcing Alabama’s same-sex marriage ban months after Obergefell v. Hodges.

He’s praised Vladimir Putin’s views on homosexuality, which he’s compared to bestiality, and claimed Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg should be impeached for ruling on marriage equality after officiating a same-sex wedding.

Moore was removed from a 1996 custody case after he denied visitation rights to the children’s mother, Suzanne Scott Borden, because she was a lesbian. A circuit court judge at the time, Moore wrote that “minor children will be detrimentally affected by the present lifestyle” of their mother, which is “forbidden both by the laws of the State of Alabama and the Laws of Nature.”

Borden’s attorneys, Laura Alfano and Janice Hart, argued he couldn’t be impartial because of his views on homosexuality, but Moore denied their motion to recuse himself—granting custody of the two young children to the father and ordering her to pay $126 a week in child support. He also barred Borden from visiting her children unsupervised, overnight, or in the presence of her partner.

An appeals court eventually removed him from the case but Moore appealed to the Alabama Supreme Court, which ultimately ordered the case be reheard without him.

Dan Avery is a writer-editor who focuses on culture, breaking news and LGBT rights. His work has appeared in Newsweek, The New York Times, Time Out New York, The Advocate and elsewhere.