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Trump picks legislative agenda over GOP repulsion of Moore

November 27, 2017 GMT

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - President Donald Trump said Sunday that electing a Democrat as Alabama’s next senator “would be a disaster,” making clear the success of his legislative agenda outweighs widespread GOP repulsion at the prospect of seating Republican Roy Moore, who is dogged by allegations of sexual misconduct.

The allegations, including claims that the 70-year-old Moore sexually assaulted or molested two teenage girls while he was in his 30s, have made the Dec. 12 election a referendum on “the character of the country” that transcends partisan politics, said GOP Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, as the party establishment cringed at Trump’s latest intervention in the race.

“In my opinion, and in the opinion of many Republicans and conservatives in the Senate, it is time for us to turn the page because it is not about partisan politics. It’s not about electing Republicans versus Democrats,” Scott said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.”

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“It’s about the character of our country,” he said.

Trump on Sunday once again plunged himself into the race, declaring in a pair of tweets - without mentioning Moore by name - that electing Moore’s Democratic opponent, Doug Jones, would “be a disaster.”

“The last thing we need in Alabama and the U.S. Senate is a Schumer/Pelosi puppet who is WEAK on Crime, WEAK on the Border, Bad for our Military and our great Vets, Bad for our 2nd Amendment, AND WANTS TO RAISES TAXES TO THE SKY,” he wrote from Florida, referring to Democrats’ congressional leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi.

Jones issued a statement that made no mention of Trump’s tweet and instead took aim at Moore, calling him “unfit for office” even before the allegations of sexual misconduct surfaced. “Doug Jones is continuing to focus on finding common ground and getting things done for real Alabamians,” the statement said.

Two women have accused Moore of sexually assaulting or molesting them decades ago, when he was in his 30s and they were teenagers.

At least five others have said he pursued romantic relationships when they were teenagers and he was a prosecutor. Moore vehemently denies the allegations.

Trump, who won election despite facing more than a dozen accusations of sexual misconduct himself, appeared last Tuesday to shrug off the allegations against Moore, saying, “Forty years is a long time.”