Evangelical leader Jerry Falwell Jr. is sticking by Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore (R) after a woman told the Washington Post that Moore groped her when she was 14 years old.
“It comes down to a question who is more credible in the eyes of the voters — the candidate or the accuser,” Falwell Jr. told the Religion News Service in an email published Friday.
The president of the evangelical Liberty University likened the sexual misconduct accusations against Moore to those made by over a dozen women last year against President Donald Trump, who Falwell Jr. enthusiastically supported.
Trump “denied that any of them were true and the American people believed him and elected him the 45th president of the United States,” Falwell Jr. told the Religion News Service.
Noting that Moore has dismissed the allegations as a false and “desperate political attack,” Falwell Jr. added in a subsequent email: “And I believe the judge is telling the truth.”
Last year, Falwell Jr. blamed the release of an “Access Hollywood” clip in which Trump bragged of groping women without their consent and a subsequent wave of sexual assault allegations against the GOP nominee on establishment Republicans trying to derail his presidential campaign.
Most evangelical voters also stuck by the GOP nominee, and polling suggests they will do the same with Moore. In a Public Religion Research Institute poll conducted after the “Access Hollywood” tape came out last October, some 72 percent of evangelical voters said that politicians who committed transgressions in their personal lives could still behave ethically in office.
h/t The Hill