Sex-claim Republican pulls ahead in race for Senate seat
Under-fire Republican US Senate candidate Roy Moore led his Democratic opponent by six percentage points, according to a new poll, with most Alabama Republicans saying the allegations of sexual misconduct against him are false.
Mr Moore was leading Democrat Doug Jones 49 to 43pc among voters likely to cast ballots in the December 12 special election. The contest was even among registered voters, it said.
Republican lawmakers in Washington, including Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell, have distanced themselves from Mr Moore and called for him to step down from the race after he was accused by several women of sexual assault and misconduct when they were teenagers and he was in his early 30s.
But Mr McConnell said yesterday that if Mr Moore was elected, the Senate would swear him in and then the Senate ethics committee would decide whether to investigate.
"We'll swear in whoever's elected and see where we are at that point," Mr McConnell said.
"We can't stop him from being seated," said Republican Senator Lindsey Graham. "If there was an (ethics) investigation and all six members of the committee said they believe he was a child molester, that would be a problem."
Two-thirds of Alabama Republicans say the allegations against Mr Moore are false.