Live updates: Alabama Senate race

Watch here for live Alabama Senate special election results and exit polls

Republican Roy Moore, the embattled former chief justice on the state’s supreme court, and Democrat Doug Jones, a widely respected former U.S. attorney, are running for Jeff Sessions’ old Senate seat today in a special election that’s being watched closely across the country. 


CANDIDATE

PARTY

VOTE PCT.

Doug Jones
Democrat
0.0 %
Roy Moore
Republican
0.0 %

Polls open at 8 a.m. ET and close at 8 p.m. ET. That’s 7 a.m. local time and 7 p.m. local time. The first exit polls are expected later this afternoon. Polling in the race isn’t much of a predictor. It’s varied dramatically — as late as the eve of the election, one poll showed Moore up by 9 points, while another on the same day showed Jones up by 10. Higher turnout in the race would seem to benefit Jones, while lower turnout likely favors Moore. Alabama is a solidly Republican state, and the last time a Democrat won a Senate seat, it was 1992, and Richard Shelby, then a Democrat, later became a Republican. Should Moore win, the balance of the Senate will remain the same, with 52 Republicans and 48 Democrats. Should Jones win, the GOP majority will shrink to 51-49. 

Since he won the Republican nomination for Senate in September, he’s faced numerous reports of sexual misconduct, including accusations that he molested a 14-year-old girl when he was 32. Jones is best known for successfully prosecuting two KKK members for a 1962 church bombing in Birmingham, and for sending Olympic bomber Eric Rudolph to jail. But he’s also a pro-abortion liberal Democrat in a state that tends to abhor abortion, liberals, and Democrats.

Their closing arguments Monday boiled down to this:

Jones: “I’m not going to be the senator that everybody in the state can agree with 100 percent of the time,” and he added, “They’ll know I’m somebody that will sit down with them. I will learn from them….I will try to be the public servant I think a U.S. senator ought to be.” 

Moore: “If you don’t believe in my character, don’t vote for me.” 

Live updates below:


3:15 p.m. DHS monitoring election from Alabama

The Department of Homeland Security is keeping tabs on the Alabama Senate election. The DHS official in charge of protecting critical infrastructure said DHS officials are in Alabama, alongside state officials, monitoring for any cyber trouble with the election.

“We are side by side with state election officials ,”Christopher Krebs told reporters, adding that  DHS is on a “heightened posture.” 

Krebs stressed so far they have not detected any cyber issues.

2:15 p.m.: Voters think Senate should expel Moore if he wins 

A new Quinnipiac poll finds that voters overwhelmingly disapprove of Mr. Trump’s decision to endorse Moore in the election. Of those polled, 63 disapproved of the president’s endorsement, 21 percent approved and 16 percent were unsure. Even some Republicans disapproved of the president’s decision. Of the Republicans polled, 50 percent approved of the president’s endorsement, and an equal number disapproved or were unsure — 25 percent.

The same poll also found voters want Moore out of the Senate, if he’s elected. A total of 60 percent of voters said Moore should be expelled if he wins. Of Republicans, 25 percent said he should be expelled if he wins, 65 percent said he should be allowed to stay, and 10 percent were unsure. An overwhelming 86 percent of Democrats said he should be expelled. 

12:30 p.m.: Moore and his wife vote

Roy Moore and his wife, Kayla Moore, arrived at their polling place on horseback in Gallant, Ala., late Tuesday morning. They ride horses to each election in which Moore is a candidate.

Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore departs on horseback after he cast his ballot in Gallant, Alabama

Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore departs on horseback after he cast his ballot in Gallant, Alabama, U.S., December 12, 2017.

Carlo Allegri / REUTERS

9:15 a.m.: Jones casts his vote

Doug Jones cast his vote after 9 a.m. ET at Brookwood Baptist Church in Mountain Brook, Ala., a Birmingham suburb, and he also plans to greet voters outside various polling locations around Alabama. After the polls close, he’ll join supporters for an Election Night watch party in Birmingham. He told reporters afterward that he didn’t think Moore would win. In Alabama, there’s a saying, he said: “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Alabama’s not going to let that shame happen again.”

Democratic Alabama U.S. Senate candidate Doug Jones votes at Brookwood Baptist Church in Mountain Brook

Democratic Alabama U.S. Senate candidate Doug Jones speaks with the media after casting his vote at Brookwood Baptist Church in Mountain Brook, Alabama, U.S. December 12, 2017.

Marvin Gentry / REUTERS

A little over an hour after polls opened, President Trump tweeted that the people of Alabama “will do the right thing,” and he attacked Democrat Doug Jones as “Pro-Abortion, weak on Crime, Military and Illegal Immigration, Bad for Gun Owners and Veterans and against the WALL.” He called Jones “a Pelosi/Schumer Puppet” and declared that “Roy Moore will always vote with us.”

 

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