Politics & Policy

The Corner

Roy Moore Has One More Embarrassment Up His Sleeve

From the last Morning Jolt of the week:

Roy Moore Has One More Embarrassment Up His Sleeve

One of the many, many reasons you do not nominate unhinged narcissists for political office is that their ego won’t let them do some of the most basic tasks in politics… like concede a race.

Nothing has changed since late Tuesday night/Wednesday morning; the margin in Alabama’s Senate race is still roughly 20,000 votes, or about 1.5 percent. It remains well outside the half-a-percent threshold that triggers an automatic recount.

Almost all of the political world has moved on.

As the White House Thursday, Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the president’s actions prove that he believes the race is done.

“I think the President’s position is pretty clear, in his outreach to Doug Jones directly, he called and they spoke yesterday,” Huckabee Sanders said.

When a reporter followed up and asked if the president thought Moore had lost ‘fair and square,’ the press secretary agreed.

“I think the numbers reflect that, and I think the President’s outreach shows that,” Huckabee Sanders said.

But Roy Moore isn’t willing to concede, declaring in a video statement that “the battle rages on.” Except… it doesn’t. The votes have been counted and cast, and it wasn’t as close as he’s insisting it is. The battle is over and he lost. Doug Jones doesn’t need Roy Moore’s concession; there is no legal or Constitutional requirement for it.  It’s just a longstanding American tradition of grace, respect and honoring the results of our democratic process. Thus, it’s not surprising that Roy Moore can’t understand it. By refusing to concede, he’s not making a statement about Jones or the vote-counting; he’s making a statement about himself.

Moore said in his video statement that the current vote count does not include military and provisional ballots, and that is why he is waiting on the certification of the votes from Alabama’s Secretary of State. But Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill told Fortune it was highly unlikely that counting these ballots would result in a change.

“There are a lot of votes that would need to be thrown out for that to occur,” Merrill said.

Again, just to reach the automatic recount threshold, Moore has to gain about 14,000 votes on Jones.

There are only 8,000 active duty military personnel living in Alabama, with another 20,294 in the reserves. To get the automatic recount, Roy Moore needs roughly half the combined military personnel in Alabama to be deployed overseas right now, for all of them to have voted in this election, and for him to have won all of their votes.

As the Alabama Secretary of State noted Wednesday, “I don’t know how many ballots are going to be returned from overseas voters or how many provisional ballots there are, but I’m confident not all of them are going to be for one candidate.”

As for the notion of Moore requesting a recount and paying for himself…

In the small chance it does happen, Moore would then have to deal with the issue of funding, which Merrill estimated could be between $1 million and $1.5 million. The total amount has to be put up when the request is made. As of November 22, the last time a filing was made publicly available, Moore’s campaign only had $636,046 in cash on hand. That means Moore would have to finance the rest of the recount himself, paying as much as $863,000.

Allahpundit wonders if we’re watching a man who had so much faith in his own victory that he cannot mentally comprehend that he lost.

Maybe that’s part of it, that Moore convinced himself that God would speak through the results and simply can’t fathom the reality that he wasn’t chosen. That reminds me of his spokesman, Janet Porter, allegedly telling Nancy French in 2008 that she didn’t love America because she preferred the Mormon Mitt Romney to the evangelical Mike Huckabee in the GOP primary. If Huckabee versus Romney was a litmus test on patriotism and Christian virtue, imagine how much more of a litmus test Moore versus Jones was. Surely the good lord prefers the former to the latter. So how can the vote totals be accurate?

Is sanity too much to ask for these days?

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