Democrat Doug Jones pulls off unlikely Alabama Senate win over Roy Moore in blow to Trump

Republican politician loses race following campaign mired in controversy

Doug Jones secures historic win in race for Alabama Senate seat
(Image credit: 2017 Getty Images)

Democrat Doug Jones has defeated Roy Moore in Alabama’s Senate election, narrowly winning by 49.7% to 48.6%, with 99% of the vote counted.

It is the first time in 25 years a Democrat has been successful in Alabama.

“We have shown the country the way that we can be unified. This entire race has been about dignity and respect. This campaign has been about the rule of law,” Jones said during his victory speech.

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Moore’s campaign was dogged by a series of allegations of sexual misconduct with a number of teenage girls when he was in his 30s.

Jones’s victory is “a stunning turn of events and the biggest political rebuke that Trump has faced”, CNN says. The US President publicly backed Moore, despite the controversy swirling around the candidate, on the advice of former White House advisor Steve Bannon.

“The dramatic Democratic win in deep red Alabama cuts the GOP’s Senate majority from 52 to 51, further dimming Republican hopes of enacting major legislation backed by President Trump,” Fox News says.

The Washington Post says the result followed a “wave of enthusiasm among the Democratic party’s traditional base, which was aided by a swing from Republicans to Democrats among well-educated suburban voters”.

Trump tweeted his congratulations to Jones, claiming that write-in ballots – where voters simply write the name of a person who is not an official candidate on the ballot paper – had helped swing the result.

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Moore took to the stage to say the election was “not over yet” and that a small percentage of ballots remained to be counted. He also cited an Alabama law requiring an automatic recount if the final result shows a margin of less than 0.5% between the candidates.

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