The problem with the Washington Post’s scandal story about Judge Roy Moore, the Republican candidate for the Alabama Senate seat once held by now Attorney General Jeff Sessions, is that the Washington Post has become one giant editorial page, with no credibility on factual matters because it is so frenetically anti-Trump. People simply don’t believe the Post anymore. That doesn’t mean that everything the Post writes is wrong. But it’s always suspect.
The Post, now the plaything of 53-year-old Amazon gazillionaire Jeff Bezos, has a new slogan: “Democracy dies in darkness.” But that slogan can be easily reversed: “Democracy dies in blinding light.” People blinded by light can’t see the truth either. And the Post is blinded by the fierce light of its own anti-Trump mania.
The Post has just claimed that candidate Moore behaved in an improper sexual manner with (or perhaps “to”) a 14-year-old girl, Leigh Corfman, 38 years ago.
Moore denies it.
The Post says that two of the then 14-year-old’s childhood friends claim that she “told them at the time that she was seeing an older man, and one says Corfman identified the man as Moore.” Corfman’s mother says, according to the Post, that “her daughter told her about the encounter more than a decade later, as Moore was becoming more prominent as a local judge.
”Three other women, according to the Washington Post, say “Moore pursued them when they were between the ages of 16 and 18 and he was in his early 30s,episodes they say they found flattering at the time, but troubling as they got older.”
Moore denies all, except that he may have dated teenage girls.
What should rational people, not blinded by anti-Trump hysteria, believe?
Moore makes the argument that he has run for statewide office five times and this charge has never surfaced before. The argument is compelling, but not dispositive. We are living, now, in the post-Harvey Weinstein era: It takes less courage for victims of sexual aggression to come forward with their stories. Their silence twenty years ago, ten years ago, even five years ago is understandable.
What to do? Mitt Romney, the third-rate presidential contender in 2008, announced that “innocent until proven guilty is for criminal convictions, not elections.” That is a dangerous standard for a Republican to lift: Republicans live in a hostile media world — in case you hadn’t noticed.
Do we really want the media, now frenetically left-wing and anti-Trump, deciding who is innocent and who is guilty of whatever charges are publicized during a campaign? Isn’t a jury, in this case of the voters of Alabama, a better bet?
And whatever happened to the statute of limitations? Those statutes exist for a reason: After the passage of many years, evidence gets old, records are lost, memories fade. Even current eyewitness accounts are notoriously inaccurate, as people with only minimal knowledge of trial law know.
Leigh Corfman may, today, truly believe what she has just told the Washington Post. Mitt Romney, who once aspired to the highest office in the land, a position that included overseeing the Department of Justice, said, “I believe Leigh Corfman.” Really? Romney has never laid eyes on the woman; all he has to go on is an account in a notoriously anti-Republican newspaper and yet: he believes!
Statutes of limitations also reflect, if only informally, the sense that, with the passage of time, people can change: Is Roy Moore really the same man he was 38 years ago? Maybe amendment of life, through grace, is a belief limited to Christians, not intelligible to the left-wing media. But then how to account for their continuing adulation of Bill Clinton and his enabler Hillary?
What to do? There are two practical solutions.
One: let the voters be the jury. That’s probably best.
But there is an alternative: Judge Moore drops out of the race; Attorney General Jeff Sessions resigns and runs a write-in campaign to regain the seat he vacated to become attorney general.
Sessions’s tenure at the Justice Department has — how to put this delicately? — not been a thing of beauty: Much has been left undone. And because he recused himself over the Russia business (a stupid mistake), he has been impotent in dealing with the metastasizing Russia scandals. President Trump all but fired him,understandably, which would have been yet another scandal.
A new attorney general could go all out after the Clintons, now in their 25th year of villainy, and get to the bottom of the real Russia scandals.And you’d be able to read all about it in the Washington Post.
Daniel Oliver is Chairman of the Board of the Education and Research Institute and a Director of Citizens for the Republic, founded by Ronald Reagan in 1977. In addition to serving as Chairman of the Federal Trade Commission under President Reagan, he was Executive Editor and subsequently Chairman of the Board of William F. Buckley Jr.’s National Review. Email Daniel Oliver at Daniel.Oliver@TheCandidAmerican.com.