During an interview with Fox & Friends on Monday morning, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway urged Alabamans to vote for Republican Roy Moore, who is facing multiple allegations of child sex abuse, in the upcoming special election. Her reasoning: congressional GOP members needed a win on tax reform.
“Doug Jones in Alabama, folks, don’t be fooled,” she said. “He will be a vote against tax cuts. He is weak on crime. Weak on borders. He’s strong on raising your taxes. He is terrible for property owners. And Doug Jones is a doctrinaire liberal, which is why he’s not saying anything and why the media are trying to boost him.”
“So vote Roy Moore?” host Brian Kilmeade countered.
After a beat, Conway replied, “I’m telling you that we want the votes in the Senate to get this tax bill through.” She added that, “if the media were really concerned about all of these allegations”, senators like Al Franken, who was recently accused of groping two women, and Bob Menendez, whose corruption case recently ended in a mistrial, would no longer have their jobs on Capitol Hill.
Hosts Kilmeade and Ainsley Earhardt pointed out that Moore, who has been accused of sexual assault, harassment, and inappropriate behavior by multiple women — several of whom were teenagers at the time of their alleged encounters with the former Alabama chief justice — has been disavowed by the Republican National Committee (RNC), the Young Republican Federation of Alabama, and “a lot of women.”
Conway punted. “Right. And you know what? I just want everybody to know Doug Jones — nobody ever says his name and pretends he is some kind of conservative Democrat in Alabama. And he’s not,” she said.
She added that President Trump had no plans to campaign on Moore’s behalf. “The president is going to continue traveling around the country on tax cuts and other issues,” she said.
The House and Senate GOP tax bills have faced considerable scrutiny since they were first introduced in October and earlier in November. Both plans have been met with criticism from the public and tax policy experts alike, who have slammed the proposals as a boon to the super-wealthy. (Each plan cuts the corporate tax rate and reduces or eliminates the estate tax, while doing little to help middle-class families. By the end of the 10-year window, most middle-class families will end up paying more.)
But that criticism has meant little to Republicans who are bent on passing tax reform. Director of the Office of Management and Budget Mick Mulvaney suggested on Meet the Press this past Sunday that the GOP had employed certain political “gimmick[s]” to pass a tax bill in the Senate, including “gam[ing] the system” by putting expiration dates on individual tax cuts. Republicans in both chambers have also angered their Democratic colleagues by pushing through tax legislation at a rapid pace.
As Business Insider noted, there’s a reason for this. “Trump has been adamant that the bill will be on his desk ‘by Christmas,'” Business Insider’s Bob Bryan wrote. “Republicans are following a pace that meets that self-imposed deadline.”
Certainly, electing someone as steeped in controversy as Roy Moore, against all odds, would follow that pattern.
Kellyanne Conway on Roy Moore: "Whatever the facts end up being, the premises, of course, the principle, the incontrovertible principle, is that there is no Senate seat worth more than a child. And we all want to put that forward." pic.twitter.com/ysOpx8RFDt
— David Wright (@DavidWright_CNN) November 16, 2017
Conway’s comments stand in stark contrast to previous statements she made on Thursday, when she told Fox & Friends that “no Senate seat worth more than a child.”
“Whatever the facts end up being, the premise, of course, the principle, the incontrovertible principle, is that there is no Senate seat worth more than a child,” Conway told host Kilmeade. “And we all want to put that forward.”