Politicians lie, they waffle, they spin, and this is generally to be expected. As a result, no one should be surprised that junior Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) is less than willing to admit, or believe, that dirty tricks helped him defeat Roy Moore.
But let’s be honest about this conversation: Jones had a lot of help.
Before we learned about the latest disinformation campaign used by Democrats where they pretended to be prohibitionists operating a Dry Alabama Facebook page pretending to support Roy Moore, we know they engaged in multiple efforts to mislead Alabama voters.
A list of known transgressions as follows:
- Democrats funded an organization that created fake write-in campaigns targeting conservatives.
- Democrats allegedly purchased Russian bots to follow Roy Moore on social media and pitched it to a willing media.
- Democrats ran ads on social media falsely claiming that your vote was public record.
- Democrats ran TV ads falsely claiming Roy Moore was banned from the Gadsden Mall.
This only scratches the surface of the all-hands-on-deck campaign by the media, Alabama Democrats and national Democrats to brand Roy Moore as unacceptable and create the perception he was unfit for office.
Yet somehow, there still seems to be some reluctance to acknowledge these tricks are why Roy Moore lost. In a recent Washinton Post story Democrats tried to “distance themselves” from some of the dishonest actions that pushed Jones over the top.
University of Alabama political scientist Joseph L. Smith is quoted in this piece dismissing all these efforts that Democrats took as irrelevant.
Smith said, “My initial gut says that the alleged disinformation campaign I’ve read about would not have been enough to affect this race.”
“Roy Moore is so well known in Alabama that people had very settled opinions about whether they wanted them as their senator before the race even started,” he added.
This position is comically absurd. If Smith’s take was remotely valid, why the all-out dishonest assault on Alabama voters?
The 2017 election was about suppressing Republican votes and ginning up Democrats. They branded Moore as an unacceptable candidate and pushed Republicans to stay home.
Senator Doug Jones won his election in 2017 by 21,924 votes. There were 22,852 write-in votes.
Furthermore, Republicans just stayed home while Democrats showed up, resulting in Jones’ victory.
Whether you believe that Moore is unfit for office or not is irrelevant. These dirty tricks worked and for political science professors and pundits of all stripes to pretend otherwise strains their credibility.