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The GOP’s never-ending Judge Moore problem

11/16/2017, 6 a.m.

The GOP does not have a Judge Roy Moore problem. It has a Judge Moores problem. That’s plural for a reason. Moore is hardly an aberration in GOP ranks. In the past two decades the list of GOP governors, congresspersons, and state and local officials who have been accused of, convicted of and either summarily dumped from office or resigned reads like a Who’s Who of a roster sheet of sexual deviants. A long list of GOP sexual rogues have engaged in sexual molestation, rape, pedophilia, pornography trading, peeping tomism, and every sort of internet sexual trading, pandering and solicitation imaginable.

GOP Senate and party leaders sweat bullets over Moore in part because he is a political embarrassment and a potential lethal political liability with the 2018 mid-terms around the corner. Having him in office, and in the Senate, would be a direct threat to their shakiest of shaky grips on that chamber. They are toying with every desperate political trick and tactic in the book to get rid of him. That includes: finding a write-in candidate, delaying the December 12 special election, and the even more longshot tact of moving to deny him a seat or expel him if he wins the Senate race.

That’s only part of the reason the GOP sniffs deep danger in Moore. He casts the ugly and sordid public glare back on the GOP’s long history of being a safe hideout for packs of sexual deviants. Moore is yet another reminder of what has been standard operating procedure for the GOP’s family values, Bible-thumping moralists who have previously gotten caught with their pants down. In nearly all cases when the sexual deviancy, profligacy, philandering, abhorrent fetishes and pedophilia of GOP notables is exposed, the word that instantly comes to mind is hypocrisy, with a capital H. And, in nearly all cases, the news of their misdeeds quickly blew over. They were not endlessly pounded by Democrats for their acts. This stands in stark contrast to the virtual crucifixion of former North Carolina Democratic Senator John Edwards (and for a time, top Democratic presidential contender) after the revelation that he had an affair and fathered a child out of it. With Edwards there was even some talk of a criminal prosecution, as a spin off from the infidelity and out of wedlock child fathering. The party has repeatedly whipsawed Democrats for being the loose, anything goes, under miners of family values by touting gay marriage, abortion, and Planned Parenthood. These have become in the GOP hit lexicon code words for the “permissiveness” that then GOP presidential candidate Richard Nixon lambasted Democrats for in 1968. He parlayed that attack into a White House win.

In the years since then, GOP presidents, presidential candidates, and nearly every GOP officer holder, or would-be officeholder used Nixon’s morals script to win and hold office, and tar and slander Democrats as apologists for immorality. Despite the bad behavior of legions of GOP officials, the GOP has firmly imprinted family values defenders as its exclusive preserve. It will not give up the morality preserve without a fight.