Roy Moore, the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in Alabama, is defending himself for the second day in a row after allegations of sexual contact with a 14-year-old girl more than three decades ago.
Judge Moore released a lengthy statement on Friday afternoon, referring to the Washington Post’s report of sexual misconduct in 1979 as “baseless attacks on his character.”
“It has been a tough 24 hours because my wife and I were blindsided by an article based on a lie supported by innuendo,” said Moore.
The woman, Leigh Corfman, says Moore met her several times when he was a local prosecutor in his 30s and at one point drove her to his home where he touched her over her underwear and guided her hand to touch him over his, the Post reported. They did not have sexual intercourse, the Post said.
“So let me be clear. I have never provided alcohol to minors, and I have never engaged in sexual misconduct. As a father of a daughter and a grandfather of five granddaughters, I condemn the actions of any man who engages in sexual misconduct not just against minors but against any woman,” Moore said.
“I also believe that any person who has been abused should feel the liberty to come forward and seek protection.”
Aside from Corfman, three other women interviewed by the Post in recent weeks said Moore pursued them when they were between the ages of 16 and 18 and he was in his early 30s. None of the other women said that Moore forced them into any sort of relationship or sexual contact.
“I know that a lot of people wonder why this story was written. Why would women say these things if they are not true? I can’t fully answer that because as much as I have disagreed vehemently on political issues with many people over the years, I cannot understand the mentality of using such a dangerous lie to try to personally destroy someone.
“As a former Judge and administer of the law, I take the protection of our innocent as one of my most sacred callings. False allegations are gravely serious and will have a profound consequence on those who are truly harassed or molested.
“I strongly urge the Washington Post, and everyone involved, to tell the truth.
“That is all we can do, and I trust that the people of Alabama, who know my record after 40 years of public service, will vouch for my character and commitment to the rule of law.”