President Donald Trump reiterated his support for Republican Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore Friday morning, emphasizing the importance of retaining the slim Republican majority in the upper chamber.
Trump first publicly offered his support for Moore Monday, after weeks spent refusing to condemn or endorse the embattled candidate.
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— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 8, 2017
The Washington Post first exposed allegations that Moore disrobed and molested a 14-year-old girl in the 1970’s. The initial report was followed by additional accusations that Moore assaulted a 16-year-old girl and pursued romantic relationships with multiple teen girls while in his 30s.
Trump broke his silence on the issue roughly two weeks after the accusations were first made public, telling reporters “he totally denies it.”
“He says it didn’t happen,” the president told reporters at the White House before heading to Mar-A-lago for Thanksgiving. “You have to listen to him, also.”
While the White House has publicly maintained that Trump finds the accusations “concerning,” numerous reports have emerged indicating that the president privately doubts the allegations.
Public support for Moore initially fell precipitously in the wake of the reports, but his polling numbers have since recovered. He currently holds a slight lead over his opponent, Democrat Doug Jones, four days before the special election for Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s former seat.