President Donald Trump spoke with Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore by phone Monday and expressed “enthusiastic support” for the embattled GOP nominee, according to Moore’s campaign.
A Moore campaign press release stated that Trump phoned Moore while traveling on Air Force One and called Moore a “fighter.” Trump ended the call by saying, “Go get ’em Roy,” according to the press release.
“President Trump knows that the future of his conservative agenda in Congress hinges on this election,” Moore said in a statement. “... We had a good conversation over the phone today and are working together towards conservative victory on December 12.”
White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah said in a statement, "The president had a positive call with Judge Roy Moore during which they discussed the state of the Alabama Senate race and the president endorsed Judge Moore's campaign."
Moore’s wife Kayla wrote in a Facebook shortly before 11:30 a.m. , “Judge Moore just got off the phone with President Trump — we have his full support! Thank you Mr. President! Let’s MAGA!,” referencing Trump’s presidential campaign slogan, “Make America Great Again.”
Moore, the former Alabama Supreme Court chief justice, has faced multiple allegations of sexual misconduct, including assault. A number of women have said he made romantic and sexual advances when they were teenagers and Moore was in his thirties.
GOP leaders, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, called on Moore to step aside as the GOP nominee.
Moore declined, denied any wrongdoing, and accused McConnell and Democrats of plotting to derail his campaign. The Republican National Committee and the National Republican Senatorial Committee cut financial ties with the Moore campaign.
Trump had initially been quiet on the allegations, but recently stepped up attacks on the Democratic nominee, former U.S. Attorney Doug Jones. On Monday Trump took to Twitter to offer his strongest public endorsement of Moore yet.
“Democrats refusal to give even one vote for massive Tax Cuts is why we need Republican Roy Moore to win in Alabama,” Trump tweeted. “We need his vote on stopping crime, illegal immigration, Border Wall, Military, Pro Life, V.A., Judges 2nd Amendment and more. No to Jones, a Pelosi/Schumer Puppet!”
But after the allegations surfaced, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said Trump did not have plans to campaign for Moore before the Dec. 12 election. Though last week Trump’s campaign announced he is holding a rally on Friday in Pensacola, Fla., near the Alabama border and in the same media market is Mobile, Ala.
Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates the Alabama Senate race as a Toss-Up.