Sean Hannity flips, demands Roy Moore ‘remove any doubt’ or leave Alabama race

Former Alabama chief justice and U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore leaves after he speaks at a church revival in Jackson, Ala., on Tuesday. AP/Brynn Anderson

Roy Moore’s quest to become a U.S. senator from Alabama took a turn for the worse late Tuesday, when Fox News’ Sean Hannity, who had defended the Republican from charges of sexual misconduct with young girls, flipped on him – demanding he resolve inconsistencies or leave the race.

“For me, the judge has 24 hours. You must immediately and fully come up with a satisfactory explanation for your inconsistencies,” said Hannity. “You must remove any doubt…If he can’t do this, he needs to get out of this race.”

The development is leading most Alabama news sites this morning – given that Fox News is close to holy writ in this red state. Hannity’s earlier defense of Moore had prompted sponsors of his program to drop their advertising.

Late last week, on Hannity’s radio program, Moore denied the accusations, but sent shock waves through GOP gatherings in Washington with phrases like this: “I don’t remember dating any girl without the permission of her mother.”

On Monday, a fifth woman stepped up, claiming that when she was 16, Moore had attempted to force himself on her in a parked car.

“I don’t even know the woman. I don’t know anything about her,” Moore said in front of cameras. The woman produced a high school yearbook with Moore’s florid signature. Hannity identified that contradiction as his tipping point. Watch last night’s clip here:

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., called on Moore to leave the race on Monday. House Speaker Paul Ryan did the same on Tuesday – as did the Republican National Committee.

But Hannity’s departure from Moore’s side, which presumably will come this evening, carries additional weight — given the symbiotic relationship between President Donald Trump and Fox News.

What happened last night could be a prelude to a move from Trump. His Twitter account is silent on the topic this morning.

***

One of your Insiders has tapped out a piece in today’s AJC on the shift to the right by Republican candidates in next year’s race for governor. A taste:

“Everyone is putting on a rhetorical fashion show for the base right now — trying to model the most conservative hat and bloomers, so to speak,” said Dan McLagan, a former aide to ex-Gov. Sonny Perdue.

One of the more riveting rhetorical flourishes comes from state Sen. Michael Williams of Cumming, who has posted a Facebook video of a recent speech he gave to the Cobb County GOP.

It amounts to an autobiography, and begins with Williams’ suicidal father attempting to murder his entire family.

***

State Rep. Amy Carter, a Valdosta Republican, said Wednesday she’s resigning her conservative-leaning south Georgia seat to serve as executive director of advancement at the Technical College System of Georgia. Carter was first elected to the Georgia House in 2006. A special election will likely be held in early 2018.

***

Things are getting rough out there. A mailer that hit homes across Atlanta this week didn’t mention Councilwomen Keisha Lance Bottoms, one of two candidates in the runoff for mayor. But the piece did make an effort to remind voters of her ties to incumbent Mayor Kasim Reed, who has endorsed her run:

Funded by an opaque group calling itself  “Concerned Atlantans,” the flyer warns “corruption in Atlanta is out of control” and ticked off the arrests of indictments of four Atlanta officials and contractors.  (Greg Bluestein)

***

Around 5:25 on Monday afternoon, Nikema Williams got a call urging her to be at the Fox Theatre within a half hour to meet with Hillary Clinton, who was about to make a book tour appearance. Williams, a runoff candidate for the open Atlanta-based Senate seat vacated by Vincent Fort, described the impromptu meeting. “She took the time to ask details and questions about my race and told me to keep working and talking directly to voters,” she said. “I told her I was doing just that, which is why I was very under-dressed and wearing leggings.” (GB)

***

An interesting data point, given the current tax cut effort by Republicans in Congress, comes from the Gallup organization this morning:

Americans’ concerns about the U.S. economy are, by one measure, the lowest in 18 years. Fifteen percent of Americans mention an economic issue when asked to name the most important problem facing the country. The percentage mentioning the economy has been lower only once in Gallup’s 25-year trend — 13% in 1999 during the dot-com boom. It was similar, at 16%, in late 2006 and early 2007, before the recession and during the Iraq War…

As Americans continue to shift their attention away from economic matters, their opinions about the most important problem facing the U.S. increasingly center on non-economic issues, chiefly what they perceive as poor government. Twenty-three percent now mention dissatisfaction with government, significantly more than mention any other issue.

***

The Georgia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations is pointing to an Atlanta radio host as an example of Islamaphobia. On his Tuesday spot on 106.7FM, Kim “The Kimmer” Peterson attempted a send-up of Mattel’s hijab-wearing Barbie – a first for the toy company. The doll is modeled after an Olympic fencer.  Said Peterson:

“The little girls don’t have to wear the hijab. They can choose to wear a head scarf or, of course, daddy’s going to beat you with a stick…Beat the crap out of you because you’re a girl. Muslims don’t really appreciate girls.”

And then it got worse. Listen here.

***

Cindy Zeldin, a Democratic health advocate running for state insurance commissioner, nabbed the endorsement of former top Obama administration official Kathleen Sebelius. The former Health and Human Services secretary, who is known for helping implement Obamacare, said Zeldin can deliver “common-sense solutions” to Georgians when it comes to insurance. “A good insurance commissioner can make a huge difference—but so can a bad insurance commissioner,” she wrote. (TH)

Reader Comments 1

22 comments
SupremeGrandPoobah
SupremeGrandPoobah

How exactly does one go about "removing any doubt?"  Even if he was innocent there would still be "doubts."

Hoo Mee?
Hoo Mee?

Do you really need to turn to this 'news' whoare or the other to determine the underlying truth?


It's kinda sad, really...

McGarnagle
McGarnagle

Kimmer is an idiot. How he still on the air is beyond me.

JohninAtlanta
JohninAtlanta

All this talk about Roy Moore being a pedophile - but more than 30 years ago - is missing the bigger - and more recent objection to Moore, although it is a different manifestation of the same problem.  His recent  flouting of federal court decisions to please his own (now religious interest) is the most recent example of his belief he is above the law.  He thought that when he was trolling for young girls at the Gadsden Mall. (Then, when he was an assistant district attorney, he  even told one of his victims, "Who are they gonna believe - you or me"). He still thinks that when he, as state Supreme Court Justice put up a religious shrine in "his" courthouse (it was removed) and when he sent out an unsolicited order to the Probate clerks and judges around the state of Alabama telling them they were free to discriminate against same-sex couples and refuse - for that reason - their marriage applications. 

Covfefe23
Covfefe23

Good thing Black Friday is approaching; all those hillbillies that wrecked their Keurigs will be in line to buy another, no doubt.

SupremeGrandPoobah
SupremeGrandPoobah

@Covfefe23   I'm not a big coffee drinker, but those I know that are big coffee drinkers say Keurig coffee is not very good.  

SamOsborne
SamOsborne

Maybe if elected Moore could fill his Senate staff with some pedophile priests that got booted from me Catholic Church and thus sort of round out his bent toward sexual molestation from counter girls to alter boys.This broader reaching out to touch someone may be just the right Tide of how folks in Alabama want everyone to think of them.

drewmeister
drewmeister

You’ve outdone yourself Sam. A pretty and petty half-witted comment.

standingovation
standingovation

Moore is pedo, he's gotta go....

Keisha Bottoms is a way better alternative to that race baiting Mary Norwood.

To think Mary Norwood actually had those race baiting robo calls sent out makes one want to inner mouth vomit...

USMC2841
USMC2841

@standingovation Nobody has a problem with Mary Norwood until she runs against part of the legacy Atlanta Mayoral conglomerate.  The airport and other contract issues have been a blight on the city for far too long.  Federal investigations are becoming the norm.  Atlanta will never reach its full potential until the corruption is ousted from city government.

TomGaff
TomGaff

@standingovation Atlanta must have a black leader! How else is it going to remain the Great City it is? Since Sam Massell left in the mid 70's, how many scandals have occurred in the Great City? Yes, nothing but black Mayors since then!

TomGaff
TomGaff

@the1percentcaresnot @TomGaff @standingovation Does not matter if the business men were white, black or purple. The leaders of the City were elected officials, of the citizens. They are supposed to be held to a higher standard of conduct and ethics. Wonder how many became wealthy during their term of office? I know for a fact, the City does not pay that well!

USMC2841
USMC2841

Allegations against Moore are serious and deserve to be investigated.  Just like the harassment brought to light by Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.).  Congress should not be condemning Judge Moore on unproven charges when they have sitting members they chose not to deal with.

knight490
knight490

@USMC2841 What more proof do you need?  Even Hannity has turned against Moore.

USMC2841
USMC2841

@knight490 @USMC2841 Hannity has spoken out against the actions of many, mostly Democrats.  Are they all guilty?  Hannity does not hold any special title that enables him to determine guilt.  I respect that he has questions about the inconsistencies in what Moore is saying and I even said these inconsistencies deserve to be investigated.

Covfefe23
Covfefe23

@knight490 @USMC2841 He's a rabid Trumpkin; the amount of proof doesn't matter, so long as it keeps a Democrat from getting the seat.

Belay5011
Belay5011

@USMC2841 @knight490 What more evidence to do you need? Video? Co-workers said he dated high school girls and everyone knew! I don't care if they were consensual age. 

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