Roy Moore, Jeff Sessions and an increasingly disturbing Alabama Senate race

Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell unequivocably called on Republican Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore to drop out of the race today. There is no indication that Roy Moore will actually drop out. McConnell is now floating the idea of a write in candidate. That’s led some to ask if the Republicans may be trying to shoehorn Jeff Sessions back into the Senate, just as he’s on the verge of losing his current job of Attorney General.

Things got more complicated this afternoon when Republican Senator Cory Gardner called on his party to expel Roy Moore from the Senate if he wins the election. The Governor of Alabama, a Republican, would then appoint a replacement. Again, some are throwing around Jeff Sessions’ name in this scenario.

I don’t think I buy it. It’s too late for Roy Moore to be forcibly removed from the ballot, or for anyone else to be added. If Jeff Sessions or any other Republican were to launch a last-minute wtite-in campaign, it would have no chance of succeeding at this late date, and it would only serve to take votes away from Roy Moore.

The most likely outcome of a Republican write-in campaign would be a victory by Democratic candidate Doug Jones. At this point I believe Mitch McConnell wants Roy Moore to lose, so the entire mess will just go away. He has enough problems right now . As far as Jeff Sessions, although he does have a lot of Republican friends in the Senate, it’s not clear they’d even want him back at this point. They’re all trying to avoid the Trump-Russia scandal, and Jeff Sessions is now a controversial key suspect. In any case the only safe path for the Democrats is to get out there and make sure that Doug Jones wins outright.

Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report