Embattled Alabama Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore ahead in CBS poll


WASHINGTON, Dec 3 (Reuters) - Embattled Republican U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore led his Democratic opponent by six percentage points in a CBS News poll released on Sunday, with most Alabama Republicans saying the allegations of sexual misconduct against him are false.

Moore was leading Democrat Doug Jones 49 to 43 percent among voters likely to cast ballots in the Dec. 12 special election, CBS said. The contest was even among registered voters, it said.

SEE ALSO: Mitch McConnell backtracks three weeks after saying Roy Moore should drop out: 'I’m going to let the people of Alabama make the call'

Republican lawmakers in Washington, including Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell, have distanced themselves from Moore and called for him to step down from the race after he was accused by several women of sexual assault and misconduct when they were teenagers and he was in his early 30s. Reuters has not been able to independently verify the allegations.

But McConnell said on Sunday that if Moore is elected, the Senate will swear him in and then the Senate ethics committee would decide whether to investigate the allegations.

"We'll swear in whoever's elected and see where we are at that point," McConnell said on CBS' "Face the Nation."

15 PHOTOS
Lawmakers react to Roy Moore sexual misconduct allegations
See Gallery
Lawmakers react to Roy Moore sexual misconduct allegations
Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore is accused of initiating a sexual encounter with a 14-year-old girl when he was 32, according to a Washington Post report.

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
The allegations against Roy Moore are deeply disturbing and disqualifying. He should immediately step aside and all… https://t.co/MXrceCZZ9a
If there is any truth at all to these horrific allegations, Roy Moore should immediately step aside as a Senate candidate.
JUST NOW: @lisamurkowski on WaPo Report on Roy Moore: “I’m horrified and if it’s true he should step down immediately.”
If there is any shred of truth to the allegations against Roy Moore, he should step aside immediately.
Look, I'm sorry, but even before these reports surfaced, Roy Moore's nomination was a bridge too far.
The allegations leveled at Roy Moore are disturbing. I have serious concerns about his prior conduct and fitness fo… https://t.co/EQcUEpHRKH
Ted Cruz: Roy Moore allegations "serious and troubling," should "immediately withdraw" if true… https://t.co/XuW33Chx5j
NRSC Chairman Cory Gardner: “If these allegations are found to be true, Roy Moore must drop out.” https://t.co/y4UEOJmZWa
Portman says Moore should drop out of the race if the Moore reports are true, says he has “no reason to doubt”… https://t.co/mOhGuTl2d9
I've long opposed Roy Moore & his divisive viewpoints. The actions described make him unfit for office. The GOP mus… https://t.co/8rpkIH3FkX
I am pulling my endorsement and support for Roy Moore for U.S. Senate.
Having read the detailed description of the incidents, as well as the response from Judge Moore and his campaign, I… https://t.co/cuO0MkNxVJ
I have now read Mr. Moore’s statement and listened to his radio interview in which he denies the charges. I did not… https://t.co/OQDdcvO3fX
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

"We can't stop him from being seated," said Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, who was also interviewed on CBS. "If there was an (ethics) investigation and all six members of the committee said they believe he was a child molester, that would be a problem."

According to the CBS poll, 71 percent of Alabama Republicans say the allegations against Moore are false, and believe that Democrats and the media are behind the accusations.

Another poll a day earlier had Jones barely ahead. The Washington Post-Schar School poll said Jones' support among likely voters stood at 50 percent, versus Moore's 47 percent.

President Donald Trump originally backed Moore's opponent in the Republican primary, Senator Luther Strange. But Trump has since defended Moore, noting Moore has denied allegations of sexual misconduct. The president says he does not want Moore's Democratic opponent to win.

14 PHOTOS
Women who have accused Roy Moore of sexual assault
See Gallery
Women who have accused Roy Moore of sexual assault
Beverly Nelson (L) shows a school year book with attorney Gloria Allread during a news conference announcing new allegations of sexual misconduct against Alabama Republican congressional candidate Roy Moore, in New York, November 13, 2017. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Gloria Deason
Wendy Miller
Gloria Deason
Wendy Miller
Gloria Deason
Accuser Beverly Young Nelson, reacts while reading a statement claiming that Alabama senate candidate Roy Moore sexually harassed her when she was 16, in New York, U.S., November 13, 2017. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Attorney Gloria Allred stands with accuser Beverly Young Nelson, holding a sketch of herself made when she was 16 after reading a statement claiming that Alabama senate candidate Roy Moore sexually harassed her when she was 16, in New York, U.S., November 13, 2017. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Beverly Nelson (L) reacts as she reads a statement to reporters with attorney Gloria Allred during a news conference announcing new allegations of sexual misconduct against Alabama Republican congressional candidate Roy Moore, in New York, November 13, 2017. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 13: Beverly Young Nelson (L) speaks to the media with her lawyer Gloria Allred, at a news conference where she has accused Alabama Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore of sexually abusing her when she was 16 on November 13, 2017 in New York City. Moore, a controversial politician who recently won a run-off against Luther Strange for Alabama's Senate seat, is currently fighting accusations alleging that he pursued sexual relationships with teenagers -- including a 14-year-old -- when he was in his 30s. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Trump is slated to travel to a rally in Pensacola, Florida on Friday -- a city just across the state line from Alabama -- just days ahead of the Alabama election. The timing and location gives Trump an opportunity to express support for Moore.

Republicans hold a slim 52-48 majority in the Senate and are eager to maintain their advantage to advance Trump's legislative agenda on taxes, healthcare and other priorities. (Reporting by Susan Cornwell and Roberta Rampton; Editing by Sandra Maler)

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.