By Jennifer De Pinto, Fred Backus, Kabir Khanna and Anthony Salvanto
A new CBS News poll finds 71 percent of Alabama Republicans say the allegations against Roy Moore are false, and those who believe this also overwhelmingly believe Democrats and the media are behind those allegations.
The poll found 92 percent of Republicans who don’t believe the allegations against Moore say the Democrats are behind the charges, and 88 percent say newspapers and the media are behind them.
Multiple women have come forward to accuse Moore of inappropriately pursuing or touching them when they were teenagers. The youngest woman to accuse Moore says she was 14 and he was 32 at the time.
The Senate contest looks to be highly dependent on turnout. Moore has a lead over Democrat Doug Jones, 49 percent to 43 percent, among the likely voters who are most apt to vote on Dec. 12. Among all registered voters, the contest is even. And nearly a quarter of voters still describe themselves as “maybe” or “probably” going to vote.
A majority of Alabama Republican voters (53 percent) say the allegations against Moore are a concern, but that other things matter more. One-third of Republicans say the allegations are not a concern to them.
The poll describes a picture of many Republican voters choosing based on other issues: Half of Moore’s supporters say they are backing him mainly because they want a senator who will cast conservative votes in the Senate, rather than because they think Moore is the best person for the job.
The poll also found 49 percent of Moore voters say their Senate vote is in support of President Trump, and 23 percent of Moore voters say the president’s comments about the race, specifically, have made them more likely to back Moore.
Among all registered voters, the president has a 57 percent approval rating in the state. Among Moore’s voters, it is an astounding 96 percent approval.
Doug Jones does not appear to be drawing many crossover Republicans, which he would almost surely need in order to gain ground. Only 9 percent of Republicans say they’re voting for him.
More than eight in Republicans are planning to vote for Moore, and a higher number of Moore’s backers call themselves definite voters than do Jones’ backers.
Looking for signs of what could happen in the final week, the race could still change, as 12 percent of Republicans say they could change their minds. Moore, in turn, could potentially benefit from voters who say they’re unsure about their vote choice or backing “someone else” at the moment, as this group looks like they’re usually Republican: two-thirds voted for Donald Trump in 2016.
Alabama remains a deeply conservative state: most registered voters believe that abortion should be illegal (58 percent) and that same-sex marriage should not be legal (56 percent). Moore draws nearly nine in 10 voters who believe abortion should be illegal. Only 19 percent of registered voters call themselves liberal.
The CBS News 2017 Alabama poll is conducted by YouGov using a representative sample of 1,067 registered voters in Alabama between November 28–December 1, 2017. The margin of error based upon the entire sample is 3.8 percent and for likely voters is 4.8 percent.
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