The chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee said Thursday that the committee will never support Roy Moore, the Alabama Senate candidate who has been accused of sexual misconduct with teenage girls.
“Roy Moore will never have the support of the senatorial committee. We will never endorse him. We won’t support him,” Colorado senator Cory Gardner told THE WEEKLY STANDARD. “I won’t let that happen. Nothing will change. I stand by my previous statement.”
Gardner’s unequivocal statement comes days after President Donald Trump firmly endorsed Moore, and the Republican National Committee renewed its support for the embattled candidate after cutting ties with him in mid-November. The stark divide at the highest levels of the Republican party is highly unusual, and one that is unlikely to fade as the party pushes toward the November 2018 midterm elections.
Asked about the president’s endorsement, Gardner said: “We’ve taken a different position. I think our position is right.”
Gardner led the call in November for the Senate to vote on expelling Moore if he wins.
“I believe the individuals speaking out against Roy Moore spoke with courage and truth, proving he is unfit to serve in the United States Senate and he should not run for office,” he said in a statement. “If he refuses to withdraw and wins, the Senate should vote to expel him, because he does not meet the ethical and moral requirements of the United States Senate.”
Majority leader Mitch McConnell has said that Moore will “immediately” face a Senate Ethics Committee probe should he win.
Moore is facing allegations of molesting a 14-year-old girl, sexually assaulting a 16-year-old, and pursuing romantic relationships with teenagers when he was in his 30’s. Those charges triggered a wave of Republican Senate calls in November for Moore to “step aside.”
This post originally appeared on Weekly Standard