DKW 86 6,548 Posted November 27, 2017 Share Posted November 27, 2017 Why Trump Stands by Roy Moore, Even as It Fractures His Party Quote What the president did not foresee was that the friction would reach inside his immediate family. He vented his annoyance when his daughter Ivanka castigated Mr. Moore by saying there was “a special place in hell for people who prey on children,” according to three staff members who heard his comments. “Do you believe this?” Mr. Trump asked several aides in the Oval Office. Mr. Moore’s Democratic opponent in the Alabama race, Doug Jones, quickly turned her comments into a campaign ad. ... Mr. Trump’s responses to the Moore revelations have been pronounced but not consistent. He accepted the candidate’s initial denials, and then was shocked at how tepid Mr. Moore appeared when asked during an interview with Sean Hannity whether he still maintained his innocence, according to one person close to the president. Privately, Mr. Trump has acknowledged that he is making a cold political calculus in the hope that the Republicans will hold on to the seat. A White House official on Saturday reiterated the president’s view that he believes Mr. Moore should quit the race if the allegations are proved true, but the official stressed that the candidate has denied them. Absent action from Mr. Trump, party leaders have explored — and abandoned — a number of ways to derail Mr. Moore. They considered recruiting another Republican to run a write-in campaign against Mr. Moore and Mr. Jones, but two private polls showed that such a candidacy would have no chance of success. Both polls, commissioned by Republican groups in mid-November, found Mr. Jones leading Mr. Moore in a head-to-head election and winning handily in a three-way race, according to people who reviewed the results. Public polls have indicated a very close race. Mr. McConnell and his allies have believed for weeks that disaster awaits, win or lose, if Mr. Moore remains in the race: Either the Democrats will claim the seat on Dec. 12, or Mr. Moore will win and thrust the party into an agonizing monthslong debate over whether to expel him. The Senate leader has told fellow Republicans in private that Mr. Moore’s nomination has endangered the party’s hold on the Senate, according to people who have spoken with him — his starkest acknowledgment so far that the political environment has turned sharply against his party since Mr. Trump’s election. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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