A biblical reference is now being used to defend Alabama GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore against allegations that he molested a 14-year-old girl.
Moore, 70, who is currently vying for the Republican U.S. Senate seat in Alabama, has allegedly pursued multiple women when they were minors, according to an investigative piece published in the Washington Post on Nov. 9.
However, Alabama State Auditor Jim Ziegler has justified the women’s claims on Moore, attributing the story of Mary and Joseph as his defense.
"Take Joseph and Mary. Mary was a teenager and Joseph was an adult carpenter. They became parents of Jesus," Ziegler told The Washington Examiner. "There's just nothing immoral or illegal here. Maybe just a little bit unusual."
Leigh Corfman, an Alabama woman, states that the former Alabama Chief Justice made sexual advances on her when she was 14, removing her clothes and fondling her through her underwear.
Moore has publicly dismissed the allegations claiming that The Post and these women have a secret agenda of tarnishing his campaign.
"The forces of evil are on the march in our country. We are in the midst of a spiritual battle with those who want to silence our message," Moore wrote in an email to his supporters.
Looking at Ziegler’s response, many evangelical leaders have been quick to bash the official for his commentary on the matter.
"Bringing Joseph and Mary into a modern-day molestation accusation, where a 32-year-old prosecutor is accused of molesting a 14-year-old girl, is simultaneously ridiculous and blasphemous," said Ed Stetzer, a pastor and church consultant who chairs the Billy Graham Center of Church, Mission and Evangelism at Wheaton College.
Moore has long been an antagonist to the LGBT community. In 2005 he said 'homosexual conduct should be illegal.' He once argued that the marriage equality ruling was worse than the Dred Scott ruling in 1857 that upheld the practice of slavery and led to the Civil War. And finally he was removed as the Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice after he told probate judges to defy federal court orders on same-sex marriage. This week he went after the transgender community saying during a press conference "The transgenders don't have rights. They’ve never been denominated as having rights by the U.S. Supreme Court. He believes in transgender bathrooms and transgenders in the military. I disagree with him 100 percent.”
Many Alabama Republicans, like Jim Ziegler, have defended Moore. But national Republicans have mostly said Moore should quit the race, if the allegations are true. Moore though is doubling down and refusing to step aside. But even if he did, according to Alabama law, his name would still appear on the ballot. The election is December 12. His Democratic opponent is Doug Jones.