Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore appeared for a rare campaign event in an Alabama church Wednesday night, where he accused a “conspiracy” of liberals, LGBTQ individuals, and “the Washington establishment” of orchestrating the many allegations of sexual misconduct against him.
And he might still win the upcoming special election for the Alabama Senate seat. Polls released this week show that the 70-year-old Republican, who denies the allegations that he sought to date several teenage girls while in his 30s, is now ahead of his Democratic opponent, Doug Jones.
“I’m still leading. And they tried unsuccessfully,” Moore told the crowd Wednesday, pausing to allow the audience to clap. “They’ve tried unsuccessfully to change that. They’ve done everything.”
READ: Alabama’s wealthy suburbs don’t like Roy Moore, but they may vote for him anyway
He went on, “When I say ‘they,’ who are they? They’re liberals. They don’t want conservative values. They’re the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender [individuals] who want to change our culture. They’re socialists who want to change our way of life… They’re the Washington establishment.”
Moore later added that he believes a “drug dealer” he held in contempt while a deputy district attorney is “at the heart of this conspiracy,” since “drugs are at the base of it.”
The speech marked a rare public appearance from Moore, who’s largely disappeared from his own campaign following allegations he molested multiple women when they were teenagers and he was a 30-something district attorney. The allegations include one from a woman who said she was just 14 when Moore took her to his house and molested her.
READ: In rural Alabama, allegations against Roy Moore are “fake news”
President Donald Trump, who is backing Moore, also isn’t campaigning in Alabama for him, while several Republicans have withdrawn their support altogether.
Jones, meanwhile, is running around Alabama to appear at as many campaign events as possible. He’s also outspending Moore seven-to-one on TV ads, many of which highlight the accusations.