MONTGOMERY — Roy Moore, last year removed from office as the state’s chief justice, appeared a step closer Tuesday night to a new Senate office in Washington, D.C.
Unofficial results showed Moore with a commanding lead over interim Sen. Luther Strange, the state’s former attorney general. Both the Associated Press and New York Times called the race for Moore by 8:30 p.m.
Moore, who pulled a pistol from his pocket at a rally Monday night to show his support for the Second Amendment, rode a horse to cast his vote Tuesday morning and an apparent wave of anti-establishment support to a victory in the GOP runoff.
Moore’s support, especially in rural parts of the state, outmatched Strange and his endorsements by President Donald Trump. Strange, with the help of the Mitch McConnell-backed Senate Leadership Fund, significantly outspent Moore on advertising.
Strange conceded the race and thanked supporters.
“(Wednesday) I will go back to work with President Trump and do all I can to advance his agenda over the next few weeks,” Strange said in a written statement. “…I am especially grateful for the support of President Trump and Vice President Pence, as well as the strong example set by my friends Richard Shelby and Jeff Sessions. I congratulate Roy Moore on the result this evening. May God be with him and may God continue to bless Alabama and the United States of America.”
Tuesday’s voter turnout appeared to be the lower than the August primary, at about 12 to 15 percent, Secretary of State John Merrill said Tuesday evening. Strategists had said Strange would likely need more voters to turn out in order for him to win.
“(Moore’s win) says the core, the bone marrow of the Alabama Republican party is sympathetic to ethics and transparency in government and that the core of the party still prefers that their senators be independent of Washington influence and Washington money,” Jess Brown, a retired political science professor said.
Moore now faces former U.S. Attorney Doug Jones in the Dec. 12 general election. In last month’s primaries, about 25 percent of the 589,175 ballots cast were from those who voted Democrat, signaling Jones has significant work to do in the next two months.
“Since the beginning of this race, I have focused on issues that matter to the people of Alabama: health care, jobs, and the economy,” Jones said in a statement Tuesday night. “Unfortunately, there has been little discussion about those issues in the bitter race of the last few weeks. These are not Democratic issues. These are not Republican issues.”
The special election is to replace Jeff Sessions, who became U.S. Attorney General early this year.
Support local journalism reporting on your community
* New Subscribers Only
* Digital Subscription Only
After the initial selected subscription period your subscription rate will auto renew at $12.00 per month.
Welcome to the discussion.
Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.