By all rights, when Roy Moore was credibly accused of molesting women and pursuing girls young enough to be his daughters, his campaign for Jeff Sessions’ Senate seat should have been over. And yet, the Republican ex-state chief justice was not only able to stay in the race, but lost in a squeaker to Democratic rival Doug Jones.
How was this possible? Well, it was due in large part to the abortion issue. At nearly every turn, Moore reminded voters that he opposes abortion in nearly all circumstances, while Jones is pro-choice. This led to some outrageous contortions and distortions, such as this display from Alabama Governor Kay Ivey.
Even though Ivey said she had no reason to doubt Moore’s accusers, she said she was still voting for Moore because of the Supreme Court.
How was this even remotely possible? Well, People for the American Way’s Right Wing Watch recently uncovered one possible explanation. One of the nation’s most vocal opponents of abortion claimed–with a straight face–that it didn’t really matter if Moore was a pervert. What mattered was that Jones is, at this very moment, an evildoer.
Mark Crutcher may not be a household name even to most political junkies. However, for the better part of four decades, he has been on the front lines of the effort to roll back Roe v. Wade. His organization, Life Dynamics, focuses on gathering counterintelligence about abortion clinics and pro-choice groups. He openly states that he wants to “unleash a whole army of David Daleidens” on the nation’s abortion providers. Translation–he has no qualms about deploying people who churn out selectively edited videos to libel and smear abortion providers.
This context is needed to understand his post-mortem on Jones’ shocking victory, which aired about 36 hours after Jones was declared the winner. Watch here.
Crutcher and co-host Renee Hobbs echoed earlier right-wing claims of potential voter fraud providing Jones’ margin of victory. However, Crutcher said that if it was indeed over, it would be a shame that Alabama was now represented by a “godless Marxist” Senator.
Hobbs thought it was even more shameful that people were listening to what the “godless liberal media” were saying about Moore. After all, they were just “accusations.” Crutcher wondered why the accusations came up when Moore was running for a Senate seat, and yet never came out when he was running for chief justice and governor.
But then Crutcher went off the deep end. He claimed that even if Moore really did pursue teenage girls, it didn’t matter as much as Jones’ current support for abortion.
“For the purpose of this election, then what that means is you’re left with a choice between a man who 40 years ago did these things that he shouldn’t have done, obviously, and another man who is a current baby-killer.”
As if he didn’t make himself clear earlier, Crutcher claimed that even if the allegations against Moore were true, Alabamians were faced with a choice between “a man who may have been a sexual predator of young girls 40 years ago or 30 years ago, and a current baby-killer.”
Crutcher was alarmed by exit polls showing that 32 percent of voters who wanted to ban abortion in all circumstances voted for “this baby-killer” Jones. He was also appalled that 30 percent of self-identified evangelicals voted for “this godless degenerate.” He felt it exposed an “internal” problem in the anti-abortion movement, and that it was time for the movement to go back to its roots.
So let’s see if we’ve got this right. If someone with a longstanding record of opposing abortion is credibly accused of molesting women years ago, it shouldn’t matter–especially if his opponent is pro-choice. Crutcher may have just proven why these women were skittish about coming forward in the first place. They feared no one would believe them, and that their stories would be branded as partisan hit jobs.
And while we’re on the subject of present behavior, Mark, are you aware that Moore was caught red-handed lying about his role in a divorce case involving one of his accusers? Or his refusal to share supposed evidence that another accuser was lying? Or his silence on a disgraceful attempt by right-wing activists to rook The Washington Post into printing false accusations against him? And on, and on.
This is exactly the sort of thing that led me to walk out on the anti-abortion movement in 2011, and what eventually led me back to the pro-choice side. If ending abortion is so important that people like Moore must be supported regardless of circumstance, then it’s only fair to ask–is the anti-abortion movement really about the sanctity of life? Or is it there an ulterior motive at play, like finding an excuse to get the government in areas of our life where it doesn’t belong?
No cause should ever be so important that basic standards have to be thrown out the window in order to further it. If ending abortion requires putting Moore in the Senate even if the allegations against him are true, then Crutcher is lying about being pro-life. He is for forced-birth.
I have said on numerous occasions that the so-called “mainstream” anti-abortion movement has a hard sell to make to me in order to convince me to join them again. Claptrap like this, suggesting that any schmuck deserves unreserved support if they claim to be “pro-life,” proves that they aren’t even beginning to make it.
(featured image courtesy Life Dynamics’ Facebook)