Doug Jones pulls out huge win in Alabama

Doug Jones. Photo by Doug Jones for Senate.

The Senate race between Republican Roy Moore and Democrat Doug Jones was a Tuesday night cliffhanger, as votes are counted in a state where the GOP candidate would normally be an easy winner.

The allegations against Moore of sexually abusing teens and his history of controversial comments about women and minorities were enough for a reliably red state to elect its first Democratic senator in a generation.

The Jones win trims the Republican Senate majority to 51-49 and deal a blow to President Donald Trump, who backed Moore amid the national conversation over sexual misconduct.

Exit polls were virtually split as to whether voters believed the allegations against Moore: 49% said they were probably or definitely true while 45% said they were probably or definitely false. A majority of the electorate, 57%, decided who to support before news of Moore's alleged child molestation and sexual assault broke in November.

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Jones voted early Tuesday morning at Brookwood Baptist Church in Mountain Brook. Speaking with reporters, he cast the election as an opportunity for Alabama voters to reject the embarrassment that Moore -- who's been ousted twice as state Supreme Court chief justice and has attacked LGBT+ Americans, Muslims and women -- could bring the state.

"In Alabama we have come so far with too many things, and there is saying: 'Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.' Alabama is not going to let that shame happen again," he said.

Jones' campaign benefited from high African-American turnout. Black voters made up 30% of the electorate, CNN's exit poll showed -- higher than the 27% they comprised in the 2012 presidential election and above the marks the Jones campaign felt it needed to hit in order to have a chance. Of those black voters, 95% backed Jones, the exit poll showed.

This isn't the first upset of 2017. Not long ago, Danica Roem, D-Va. a transgender candidate, beat an ultra conservative incumbent GOP Delegate.

Read more on Danica here: 
Election a series of victories for LGBT+ candidates
Va. GOP would rather stop using gendered language than refer to Danica Roem as a woman

Copyright The Gayly 12/12/2017 @ 9:02 p.m.