Typically, accusations of sexual predation by a politician running for office would not be seen as a great way to raise campaign funds. But these are not typical times.
Ever since Roy Moore, the Republican U.S. Senate candidate from Alabama, was accused of predatory behavior toward teenage girls when he was in his 30s in the 1970s, the donations have come pouring in.
In just three days last week, Moore’s campaign raised more than $500,000 and invigorated its internet funding efforts, Moore’s campaign manager Brett Doster told The New York Post on Saturday.
“Donations have been pouring in from Alabama and from all over the country in an unprecedented way,” Doster told the Post. “We are confident that we will have the resources over the next three weeks to finish strong with victory.”
Doster said Moore received more money from online donations during the first six days after the allegations surfaced — between Nov. 10 and Nov. 15 — than in the six weeks after he won the Republican nomination over the Trump-endorsed Luther Strange in a tumultuous September primary.
In the past 10 days, nine women in total have come forward with allegations of sexual harassment or assault by Moore, but Moore has denied that there is any truth to their claims.
While Moore has seen a windfall since the scandal started, the accusations have also helped Democratic candidate Doug Jones. NBC News reported that his campaign took in about $250,000 a day over the first few days after the Moore allegations emerged.
“We have seen a pickup in fundraising since Roy Moore was nominated and Alabama’s choice became clear,” Jones campaign chairman Giles Perkins said.
Prior to the allegations, Moore held a substantial lead in total donations. According to the most recent official fundraising records, which are dated to Oct. 15, Moore enjoyed a notable advantage over Jones, as one would expect in a Republican state like Alabama. In the previous six weeks, Moore had raised $2.5 million to Jones’ $1.6 million, the Post reported.
Alabama voters will go the polls on Dec. 12 for a special election.
Prior to the scandal, polls showed that Moore would win easily over Jones. But with Republican senators such as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and many others, publicly stating Moore should drop out of the race, a Moore victory is not totally assured.
Some polls have shown Moore’s lead slipping, and a Gravis poll of 628 likely Alabama voters released Friday, the Post reported, found Jones with a 5-point lead over Moore.