Roy Moore’s primary response to the allegations that he molested women and pursued teenage girls is that they’re fake news and a hatchet job. But he’s also played up his credentials as a no-questions asked social conservative and Christianist.
Take this tweet he sent out last night, for instance.
I think they're afraid I'm going to take Alabama values to Washington and I can't wait. #ALsen
— Judge Roy Moore (@MooreSenate) December 6, 2017
That tweet now sounds rather awkward. Just a few hours later, the Washington Examiner went live with a report that suggested Moore and his wife, Kayla, began dating while Kayla was still legally married to her first husband.
According to Moore’s 2005 book, “So Help Me God,” he met Kayla–then known as Kayla Kisor–at a church function on the week before Christmas 1984. Moore says he immediately took an interest in her, but Kayla didn’t reciprocate right away. It’s not the first time that Moore showed interest in Kayla. If you’ll recall, Moore says he was first attracted to Kayla when he saw a 15-year-old Kayla at a dance recital.
Moore said that at the time he met Kayla, she was “divorced and with a beautiful little girl, Heather, who was nearly a year old.” But the Examiner obtained divorce records that suggest otherwise. Kayla filed for separation from her first husband, John Heald, on December 1, 1984–roughly two weeks before Moore says he and Kayla first met. Kayla filed for divorce in Floyd County, Georgia three days after Christmas 1984, citing “cruel treatment.” The divorce went final on April 14, 1985.
Now, rewind. Moore wrote that he and Kayla began dating in early 1985, “soon after” Kayla visited the office of one of Moore’s law partners. After a whirlwind courtship, they married on December 14, 1985.
That means that based on Moore’s own timeline, he and Kayla were dating while Kayla was still legally married to Heald. According to a source with knowledge of both Kayla’s first marriage, they may have been dating as early as Valentine’s Day 1985, when Moore gave Heather a puppy. When asked if Moore and Kayla had become a lot more than just good friends before Kayla’s divorce went final, this source replied, “That was always an assumption.”
Now why does this matter? Well, Moore holds himself out to be a devout fundamentalist Christian. Knowingly dating a married woman is considered a big, big, big no-no in the evangelical Christian world.
Additionally, Moore has spent most of the campaign harping on supposed discrepancies in his accusers’ accounts, and doing so loudly. That prompted the Examiner to ask why Moore shouldn’t get the same treatment.
“Amid an outpouring of misconduct allegations, Moore’s campaign has clearly set the standard that details are important and should be vetted rigorously. Why, then, should the inconsistencies surrounding Moore’s story not draw his own credibility into question?”
Moore spokesman Brett Doster told the Examiner that Moore never dated Kayla “while she was still with her ex-husband or legally married.” He did, however, say that the Examiner’s request was “really scraping the bottom of the barrel.”
So far, that’s been the only response from the Moore campaign. Perhaps Moore and his cronies know that they can’t scream “FAKE NEWS!” like they have about the allegations about his behavior around other women and girls. After all, the Examiner has a decidedly conservative bent.
You would think this would finish off Moore. But then again, he’s still standing even though far too many women have accused him of molesting and pursuing him than can be credibly dismissed.
Almost as telling as Moore’s relative silence is the fact that no prominent fundie has distanced himself or herself from Moore in the wake of this new discovery. Franklin Graham, for instance, tweeted out prayers for Moore after the Republican National Committee announced it was funneling money into Moore’s campaign once again.
I’m praying for Roy Moore and his family.https://t.co/FOxedGiTbN
— Franklin Graham (@Franklin_Graham) December 6, 2017
One has to wonder if Graham fils would be so willing to lift up Moore in prayer if he knew he was propping up a man who might be an adulterer.
(featured image courtesy Moore’s Facebook)