In a stunning victory aided by scandal, Democrat Doug Jones won Alabama’s special US Senate election, beating history, an embattled Republican opponent and US President Donald Trump, who urgently endorsed Republican Roy Moore, despite a litany of sexual misconduct allegations.
It was the first Democratic Senate victory in a quarter-century in Alabama, one of the reddest of red states, and proved anew that party loyalty is anything but certain in the age of Trump.
Tuesday’s loss was a major embarrassment for the president and a fresh wound for the nation’s already divided Republican Party.
“We have shown not just around the state of Alabama, but we have shown the country the way that we can be unified,” Jones said as supporters in a Birmingham ballroom cheered, danced and cried tears of joy.
Still in shock, Jones struggled for words: “I think that I have been waiting all my life and now I just don’t know what the hell to say.”
Meanwhile, Moore refused to concede and raised the possibility of a recount during a brief appearance at a somber campaign party in Montgomery.
“It’s not over,” Moore said. “We know that God is still in control.”
From the White House, Trump tweeted his congratulations to Jones “on a hard-fought victory,” but added that “the Republicans will have another shot at this seat in a very short period of time. It never ends!”
Jones takes over the seat previously held by US Attorney General Jeff Sessions. The term expires in January 2021.
The victory by Jones, a former US attorney best known for prosecuting two Ku Klux Klansmen responsible for Birmingham’s infamous 1963 church bombing, narrows the Republican advantage in the Senate to 51-49.
That imperils already-uncertain Republican tax, budget and health proposals, and injects tremendous energy into the Democratic Party’s early push to reclaim majorities in the House of Representatives and the Senate next year.
Still, many Washington Republicans viewed the defeat of Moore as perhaps the best outcome for the party nationally, despite the short-term sting.
Moore’s positions have alienated women, racial minorities, gays and Muslims, in addition to the multiple allegations that he was guilty of sexual misconduct with teens, one only 14, when he was in his 30s.
Had Moore won, the Republicans would have been saddled with a colleague accused of sordid conduct as Republicans nationwide struggle with Trump’s historically low popularity.
Senate leaders had promised that Moore would have faced an immediate ethics investigation.
EFFICIENCY: The rules for Philippine arrivals were revised after 17.6% of arrivals with symptoms tested positive, compared with 0.7% of those with no symptoms Starting today, Chinese spouses who hold a reunion permit can apply to enter Taiwan and travelers without symptoms from the Philippines do not need to be tested for COVID-19 upon arrival, but are to be tested after a 14-day quarantine, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that from today, Chinese who are married to a Taiwanese citizen and hold a reunion permit can apply to the National Immigration Agency for entry into Taiwan. Chinese who are married to a foreign national and hold an accompanied reunion permit
PENGHU INSPECTION: Taiwan cannot let its enemies strut around in its airspace, Tsai said, one day after a Chinese spokesman denied a median line exists in the Taiwan Strait Following China’s assertion on Monday that there is no “median line” in the Taiwan Strait, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday pledged to defend the nation’s airspace during a visit to an air force base in Penghu, saying that Taiwan cannot allow others to flex their military muscle in its territorial airspace. Tsai praised the “heroic performance” of the pilots of the Indigenous Defense Fighters who have been intercepting Chinese People’s Liberation Army Air Force planes in recent days. “I have a lot of confidence in you. As soldiers of the Republic of China [ROC], how could we let enemies strut
CONSOLIDATION? Taiwan Thinktank deputy executive-general Doong Sy-chi said Beijing’s intimidation tactics are further alienating those who identify as Chinese Only 2 percent of respondents to a poll on constitutional amendments and national identity identified as Chinese, while 62.6 percent identified as Taiwanese, the Taiwan Thinktank said yesterday. Legislators have proposed amendments to the Additional Articles of the Constitution (憲法增修條文), which would change the definition of the nation’s territory, remove the Taiwan Provincial Government as an entity, prioritize the use of “Taiwan” for national groups at international events, and remove restrictions on defining the national emblem, national flag and national anthem. The poll showed that 80.5 percent of respondents agreed that the nation should participate as “Taiwan” at events organized by world
MISTAKE: The Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy is not a UN body, and the government is committed to protecting the nation’s name, Joseph Wu said The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday condemned the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy for listing Taiwanese cities as belonging to China on its Web site, and asked that it correct the error. The organization was inaugurated in Brussels in 2016 as a global coalition of mayors committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Six Taiwanese cities at the time joined the coalition as cities in “Taiwan,” the ministry said. However, officials from the Kaohsiung City Government — one of the organization’s members — last week noticed that the city was now listed on the organization’s Web site as a