Roy Moore’s highly surprising loss in the Alabama Senate race signals that Americans are rejecting Trump’s style of politics, writes Ross Douthat in The New York Times. His provocative rhetoric that almost seems to take pride in upsetting those he disagrees with has put a bad taste in voters’ mouths. While Moore certainly also lost due to his own failures, his loss fits a pattern of Trump-endorsed politicians’ poor performances. The former judge engages in a brand of identity politics that is very similar to the president. It resulted in Republicans staying home as Democratic turnout soared. Trump’s combative nature is turning into a serious political drawback.
Democrats are trying to paint Roy Moore’s loss as a rejection of Trump, which it really isn’t, suggests Douglas E. Schoen of Fox News. The Alabaman politician lost in big part due to the accusations of sexual harassment that emerged against him before the election and not his proximity to Trump. The Democratic Party is likely to use this win as a way to break the Republican majorities in the House and Senate. Trump won Alabama by around 28 points last year, and Jones’s victory over Moore came by a very small margin. It’s clearly a bad result for the president, but not necessarily indicative that his touch hurt Republican politicians.