Donald Trump said today that US citizens in Alabama should cast their vote for Roy Moore, a senate candidate accused of molesting a 14-year old girl, and sexually assaulting several other teenage girls when he was in his thirties.
The US president spoke to reporters as he was heading to an helicopter on the South Lawn of the White House, on his way to celebrate Thanksgiving at a Trump-owned club in Florida club. You can watch video of the event here. Here are the full remarks from the White House press pool:
Q: Mr. President, are you ready to talk about Roy Moore at all?
THE PRESIDENT: Yeah, I’ll be talking about him. I can tell you one thing for sure: We don’t need a liberal person in there, a Democrat — Jones. I’ve looked at his record. It’s terrible on crime. It’s terrible on the border. It’s terrible on the military. I can tell you for a fact, we do not need somebody that’s going to be bad on crime, bad on borders, bad with the military, bad for the Second Amendment.
Q: Is Roy Moore, a child molester, better than a Democrat? He’s an accused —
THE PRESIDENT: Well, he denies it. Look, he denies it. I mean, if you look at what is really going on, and you look at all the things that have happened over the last 48 hours, he totally denies it. He says it didn’t happen. And, you know, you have to listen to him also. You’re talking about, he said 40 years ago this did not happen. So, you know —
Q: Are you going to campaign for Roy Moore?
THE PRESIDENT: I’ll be letting you know next week. But I can tell you, you don’t need somebody who’s soft on crime, like Jones.
Q: Mr. President, what is your message to women, sir, during this pivotal moment in our country where we’re talking about sexual misconduct? You’ve had your own allegations against you. What do you say to women?
THE PRESIDENT: Let me just tell you, Roy Moore denies it. That’s all I can say. He denies it. And, by the way, he totally denies it.
Q: Mr. President, what is your message to women? This is a pivotal moment in our nation’s history.
THE PRESIDENT: Women are very special. I think it’s a very special time because a lot of things are coming out, and I think that’s good for our society, and I think it’s very, very good for women. And I’m very happy a lot of these things are coming out, and I’m very happy it’s being exposed.
Q: Should Al Franken resign now?
THE PRESIDENT: I don’t know — look, I don’t want to speak for Al Franken. I don’t know what happened.
Q: What about John Conyers?
THE PRESIDENT: I just heard about Conyers two minutes ago. As far as Franken is concerned, he’s going to have to speak for himself. I’d rather have him speak for himself.
Q: Do you believe Roy Moore’s denials? Do you believe him?
THE PRESIDENT: Well, he denies. I mean, Roy Moore denies it. And, by the way, he gives a total denial. And I do have to say, 40 years is a long time. He’s run eight races, and this has never comes up. So 40 years is a long time. The women are Trump voters; most of them are Trump voters. All you can do is, you have to do what you have to do. He totally denies it.
Q: Mr. President, do you believe Congress should release the names of lawmakers who have settled on sexual harassment claims?
THE PRESIDENT: I do. I really do. I think they should. Thank you. Have a good Thanksgiving, everybody.