Roy Moore has won the Senate GOP runoff in Alabama. He’ll probably win in the special election, which will be held on December 12. There is a lot about Roy Moore that is frankly way outside the mainstream, but the voters of Alabama made their choice, which was assisted by a) the Washington backlash from telling these voters what to do, and b) the notion that we have to nuke the system after years of inaction and broken promises. Guy has a good write up about the general election that is to come—along with why some of Moore’s opinions that are just as nutty as the Democrat, Doug Jones, who is a pro-abortion extremist. Yet, even before we get into all of that, let’s discuss this clip from MSNBC, where host Lawrence O’Donnell cut away from Moore's victory speech Tuesday night because he spoke about God (via Free Beacon) [emphasis mine]:
"We have become a nation that has distanced ourself from the very foundation," Moore said. "[George] Washington said of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion, and morality are indispensable … We've got to recognize that we've been separated by something that separation of church and state doesn't stand for. It doesn't separate us from God. Nothing can separate us from God."
Moore went on to talk about the importance of the United States becoming unified, noting the protests and racial strife gripping the country.
"We are all created in the image of God. I recall what Harry Truman said in his inaugural address. The American people stand firm in the faith which has inspired this nation from the beginning. We believe that all people are created in the image of God and from that faith we will not be moved. We've been moved," Moore said, before O'Donnell cut into his speech and noted that he was talking about God "almost exclusively."
Again, there is a lot that Moore has said and believes that puts him outside the mainstream. Yet, in the interests of fairness, let’s not forget that Moore’s speech was, well, not all that interesting (via WaPo):
For starters, Moore's speech got off to a very slow start, as he devoted the first two-plus minutes to thank yous. CNN showed the beginning of the address but bailed before Moore said anything of substance. He was, quite frankly, bad TV.
MSNBC broke in at a more interesting time, showing Moore as he said: “We've got to recognize that we've been separated by something that separation of church and state doesn't stand for. It doesn't separate us from God. Nothing can separate us from God.” That was a pretty good encapsulation of Moore's message.
Fox News never broke in but played a clip, after the speech concluded, in which Moore said: “Together we can make America great; we can support the president. Don't let anybody in the press think that because he supported my opponent that I do not support him and support his agenda. As long as it's constitutional, as long as it advances our society, our culture, our country, I will be supportive.”
One beneficiary of their coverage decisions was Right Side Broadcasting, the YouTube channel that has partnered with Trump on campaign events. Right Side, based in Auburn, Ala., streamed Moore from start to finish.
“We offered live coverage of the event from the time the polls closed till just after the victory speech,” founder Joe Seales told me. “We covered the returns as they came in, and I think since the big networks were not doing this, viewership was decent. I think we got about 35,000 views overall on our coverage.”
Not too shabby — but probably not enough to make the networks second guess their calls.
Callum Borchers, who wrote the piece, cites the Free Beacon, noting that it was misleading to say O’Donnell cut away from the speech because Moore was talking about God. Yet, that’s exactly what the MSNBC host said. He added that the network said they would dip into the speech for a few seconds that turned into 70, but I think anyone would see that as a hyper-literal interpretation. Yet, this was not as nearly as horrific as Chuck Todd’s commentary. The NBC reporter said that Moore was ignorant to say our rights come from God. Someone is ignorant, and it's not Roy Moore in this instance.