There were bombshell allegations in a Thursday report by the Washington Post that U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore, when in his 30s, sought relationships with teen girls in Alabama.
U.S. Rep. Steve King, who represents Northwest Iowa, read reports that such establishment Republicans as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and others said that if the allegations were true, Moore should step aside.
That apparently moved King, roughly six hours after the initial WaPo story to tweet out a link to a story about McConnell's stance, topping the tweet with his stance: "Judge Roy Moore told to withdraw by Senators who won’t or can’t help move Trump agenda."
Judge Roy Moore told to withdraw by Senators who won’t or can’t help move Trump agenda. https://t.co/CIu13mbsvo— Steve King (@SteveKingIA) November 10, 2017
The takeaway is that King, who represents the Iowa 4th congressional district, doesn't want Republicans to flee Moore's candidacy. King has apparently made no additional public comments about Moore as of Friday.
From the Associated Press: "Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore abruptly faced lurid allegations Thursday of sexual misconduct with minors decades ago — and an immediate backlash from party leaders who demanded he get out of the race if the accusations prove true.
"The instant fallout followed a Washington Post report in which an Alabama woman said Moore, then a 32-year-old assistant district attorney, had sexual contact with her when she was 14. Three other women interviewed by the Post said Moore, now 70, approached them when they were between the ages of 16 and 18 and he was in his early 30s."
This reporting is of note because Moore in October won a Republican primary to become the party's nominee for a U.S. Senate seat in Alabama. Voters in that state will decide between Moore and Democrat Doug Jones in Dec. 12 special election. No Democrat has won a U.S. Senate seat since 1992.
In September, King had endorsed Moore. King's statement at the time included, "There is no stronger, more principled Constitutional Christian conservative than Judge Moore."
In shorthand for a lot of people, Moore is known as The 10 Commandments Judge -- the justice who erected a monument to the commandments outside the Alabama courthouse, refused to take it down, then was removed from his position in 2003 for his intransigence.
Moore considered running for president when Democrat Barack Obama was standing for re-election in 2012. Moore came to Sioux City in April 2011, when he spoke to 150 people during the same week he had formed an exploratory committee to seek the presidency.
The Moore stop six years ago was at a lecture series by then-Morningside College professor Sam Clovis. Of course, Clovis, who went on to be a top official in Donald Trump's presidential campaign, made considerable news last week.
Clovis has been questioned in connection to special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into alleged meddling by Russia in the 2016 campaign, according to media reports. Clovis testified before an October grand jury seated in Washington, D.C.
Clovis, was propelled into the middle of Mueller's high-stakes probe on Oct. 30 with the unsealing of court documents related a guilty pleading by George Papadopoulos, a former foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign.
Papadopoulos, who was secretly arrested in July for lying to the FYI and pleaded guilty last month to those charges, is cooperating with Mueller's investigation, according to the documents.
Among the court documents uncovered, Clovis in an August 2016 email urged Papadopoulos to "make the trip, if it is feasible."
The attorney for Clovis, Victoria Toensing, said Clovis never told Papadopoulos that "a principal foreign policy focus of the campaign was an improved U.S. relationship with Russia," because that was not Clovis' view of Trump's foreign policies priorities, Toensing said.