In their haste to help credibly accused child molester Roy Moore win the Alabama Senate seat left vacant by now-Attorney General Jeff Sessions, FOX News made a grave error in their coverage of one of Moore’s accusers, Beverly Young Nelson. Mrs. Nelson clarified today in a second press conference that underneath Moore’s yearbook inscription to her from her sophomore year in high school, she wrote the date and the name of the restaurant, Olde Hickory House, where she waitressed then, which she had not specified in her original press conference accusing Moore of attempted rape and using the yearbook as proof of her account.
FOX did not waste a minute. They took to Twitter to announced that Mrs. Nelson had “forged” the entire inscription. Two hours later, they deleted the tweet, but the damage was done, Roy Moore’s right-wing supporters had all the false proof they needed to back up their claims undermining his accusers’ credibility and calling the underage sex scandal a “witch hunt.”
— shauna (@goldengateblond) December 8, 2017
In her original press conference, an emotionally overcome Nelson detailed how then-34-year-old Moore, the Assistant District Attorney in Etowah County, Alabama, where they lived, met her at Old Hickory House after her shift had ended, offered the then-sixteen-year-old a ride home, and proceeded to grab her by the neck to try to force her to perform oral sex on him.
In today’s press conference, Nelson addressed why the handwriting looked different between Moore’s yearbook inscription and her notes below it, a point some detractors had cited to try to question the veracity of her claims. She added that she feels her “life is in danger,” due to the hateful responses she has received for coming forward about her harrowing experience with Moore.
Beverly Young Nelson, one of the women accusing GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore of sexual misconduct, tells @GMA it “sickens” her to think what might happen if Moore is elected. https://t.co/wuEGWr0kng pic.twitter.com/lcp5OY4x3A
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) December 8, 2017
Since then, Roy Moore has gone on a character assassination offensive, that all eight of his accusers are lying.
Incensed at his lies, one of his accusers came forward with further proof, showing he had signed her scrapbook, in which the handwriting matched the inscription in Nelson’s yearbook. Incidentally, Moore’s now-wife Kayla Kisor Moore, appeared in that same yearbook as a member of Mrs. Nelson’s sophomore class.
Despite the credibility of Moore’s accusers and their painfully detailed accounts of his sexual misconduct, including the fondling of a 14-year-old girl, many Alabama voters have doubled down on Moore. The phenomenon is reminiscent of voters in the presidential campaign doubling down on Donald Trump after the Access Hollywood tape came to light, in which he bragged about sexually assaulting women and then 16 women came forward to accuse him of the behavior he described.
President Trump has echoed Alabama voters, saying he would prefer a child molester to a Democrat in that seat, even though Moore’s opponent, Doug Jones, famously prosecuted two of the Birmingham bombers who killed four little girls in a church in 1963.
At first, the Republican National Committee had pulled its funding of more in the wake of the hailstorm of accusations. However, now, with victory in sight, the RNC has resumed funding his campaign. Republican endorsement of child molestation comes as a stark contrast to Democrats’ zero-tolerance policy for sexual misconduct, which led to the resignations of Rep. Conyers and Senator Al Franken this week.
FOX News defamed Mrs. Nelson’s character when they said she “forged” Moore’s inscription. Even though they deleted the lie, they could be on the hook for charges of defamation of character.
Brave accusers coming forward only to be defamed discourages future victims from reporting sexual assault. Victim shaming is a second assault on the victim and a moral assault on our society.
FOX and the Republican Party, for whom FOX serves as State TV, are guilty of a crime and they deserve to be punished. If the courts won’t do it, the American people must by flipping the channel away from FOX and turning out in droves to vote for Democrats in 2018 and 2020.