US Senate Republican leader calls on Alabama candidate Moore to 'step aside'

Image Sallie Bryant supporter of Republican U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore poses for

An Alabama woman on Monday said Senate candidate Roy Moore sexually assaulted her when she was a teenager, the fifth woman to accuse Moore of making improper sexual advances on her in recent days.

Since the first allegations were published on Thursday, a growing list of Republican senators have called on Moore to step aside, culminating on Monday with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who said, "I think he should step aside," in response to a question about Moore's next steps.

Speaking through tears, Nelson said she was alarmed when Moore immediately drove to the back of the restaurant and parked his auto in a dark and deserted area. She said he squeezed her neck while trying to push her head toward his crotch and that he tried to pull her shirt off. She accused him of touching her breasts and locking the door to keep her inside his auto.

On Monday, McConnell said flatly that Moore should step down. He sat in the same seat night after night.

One night, he offered to drive her home and she trusted him because he was the DA - but once she got in the vehicle, he parked next to a dumpster behind the restaurant, Nelson said at a press conference with attorney Gloria Allred in Manhattan on Monday afternoon.

"It's just really a matter as to whether he ought to be the candidate, the standard-bearer of the Republican Party", said Ohio Gov. John Kasich, on "This Week" on ABC.

Last week, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said President Donald Trump believed that "if these allegations are true, Judge Moore will do the right thing and step aside". Moore was the district attorney of Etowah County, Alabama, at the time and Nelson said she trusted him and saw him as an important local figure.

It nearly certainly would not survive a legal challenge thanks to the 1969 Supreme Court decision in Powell v. McCormack, which held that the House of Representatives could not refuse to seat an elected member as long as he or she met all of the constitutional requirements.

Allred called for legislators to hold a hearing for Moore to respond under oath to accusations from her client and other women.

Moore's denied the previous claims, and threatened to sue the Post. While reporting a story in Alabama about supporters of Moore's Senate campaign, a Post reporter heard that Moore allegedly had sought relationships with teenage girls.

Toomey did not rule out the possibility that Senate Republicans might work to unseat Moore if he wins the special election against Democrat Doug Jones. "I think we here in Washington have to be careful as well in this", Short said.

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