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Published: Tuesday, December 12, 2017 @ 1:56 AM
HEFLIN, Ala. — Alabama voters head to the polls Tuesday to decide the race for U.S. Senate between Republican Roy Moore and Democrat Doug Jones, and the outcome is being closely watched across the nation.
No Democrat has been elected to the U.S. Senate from Alabama since 1992, and President Donald Trump won the state by nearly 30 percentage points. But allegations that Moore pursued sexual relationships with teenage girls when he was in his 30s have rocked the race. He’s denied the claims.
Jones, a former federal prosecutor, has highlighted his opponent’s outspoken conservative views in his bid to energize the state’s Democratic base and flip suburban voters who typically vote for the GOP. Polls show a tight race, though special elections like the one Tuesday are notoriously hard to predict.
Moore is deeply popular with the state’s evangelical voters, a powerful voting bloc that has enthusiastically supported him in past statewide votes. In the closing weeks of the race, he’s had scattered appearances in rural churches while largely relying on supporters to defend him.
Here are five things to watch with Tuesday’s vote to succeed Jeff Sessions, whose seat became open when Trump tapped him to become U.S. attorney general:
1. It’s a big deal. Republicans now control 52 seats in the U.S. Senate, including the one held by Luther Strange, who was appointed to fill Sessions’ seat and was soundly defeated by Moore in September. A Democratic win would mean that Republicans could only afford one “no” vote to pass a Senate measure on party lines, since Vice President Mike Pence would break a 50-50 tie. Some Republicans fear a Moore victory could be equally unsettling for the party. Moore has repeatedly called for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to step down, and he in turn has withheld his support and funding for the former judge’s campaign. And Democrats would look to tie Moore to a host of GOP candidates seeking office in the midterm elections in 2018, highlighting not only accusations that he’s a sexual predator but also his history of controversial statements.
2. The bombshell allegations. Allegations against Moore of sexual misconduct involving teenagers while a prosecutor in Etowah County, Alabama, from 1977 to 1982 have threatened to upend the race. Moore has denied the allegations while claiming media outlets and Washington status quo enforcers are trying to derail his campaign. The women have stuck by their stories, and several said they are willing to testify under oath. They have left GOP voters who are concerned by the allegations in a quandary, debating between supporting a candidate accused of being a sexual predator or sending a Democrat to Washington. Some could also stay home on Tuesday or write in a candidate.
3. Alabama’s rural base. The state’s rural Republican base holds outsized sway in Alabama, where grass-roots Republicans have helped ensure that no Democrat has been elected to major statewide office since 2006. But Moore’s margins as a statewide candidate show he has underperformed other Republicans. In 2012, he narrowly won a vote for Supreme Court chief justice even as Mitt Romney carried the state by 22 percentage points. And in his 9-point victory over Strange in the primary, Moore struggled in the affluent, conservative suburbs in Birmingham and Huntsville. Moore has tried to shore up his base by crisscrossing rural areas he hopes to carry by overwhelming victories, and his advisers expect enthusiastic turnout to mark the difference in Tuesday’s vote.
4. The key to a Democratic victory. Jones must rely on a two-pronged strategy to flip the seat. He needs Alabama’s black population – a predominantly Democratic voting bloc that accounts for about 27 percent of the state – to turn out in droves. Jones, who is white, has leaned on African-American supporters, including New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, to energize black voters in populous areas like Birmingham in the closing days of the race. He has also wooed voters in Republican-leaning suburbs in the outskirts of Birmingham, Huntsville and Mobile in hopes of convincing them to vote across party lines – or not cast a ballot at all. Some suburban voters who have never cast Democratic ballots say they’ve proudly posted Jones signs in their yards.
Published: Monday, April 23, 2018 @ 5:34 AM
TRUMANN, Ark. — A man reportedly was shot and killed Sunday night outside an Arkansas Walmart as bystanders, including kids, looked on.
BREAKING NEWS UPDATE: Police Chief Chad Henson spoke with Region 8 News early Monday morning providing an update on the deadly shooting at the Walmart. Latest info here >> https://t.co/bcWze0duJT pic.twitter.com/JhGnVTWMx4— Region 8 News (@Region8News) April 23, 2018
According to KAIT, police said the slaying began as a domestic dispute at the front of the store in Trumann about 9:15 p.m. CDT. Police arrived and negotiated with an armed man who walked out of the store with a woman. The man then shot and killed a second man who "tried to intervene," KAIT reported. The armed man eventually surrendered to police and was arrested.
Police did not release the names of the people involved in the incident, but officers said the slain man was likely connected to the woman and armed man.
Dozens of shoppers were nearby when the man was shot, police said.
"A lot of people witnessed something tonight that they should have never seen," Trumann police Chief Chad Henson told KAIT. "We're going to have to go through a lot of healing from here on out. It was just a terrible day."
Published: Monday, April 23, 2018 @ 12:05 PM
Updated: Monday, April 23, 2018 @ 12:05 PM
ANTIOCH, Tenn. — At least four people are dead after a shooting at a Waffle House in Antioch, Tennessee.
Killed were Taurean C. Sanderlin, 29, a Waffle House employee who was outside the restaurant when the gunman opened fire; Joe R. Perez, 20, of Nashville, who was a patron standing outside the restaurant; Akilah Dasilva, 23, of Antioch, who was wounded inside the restaurant and died at Vanderbilt University Medial Center; and DeEbony Groves, 21, of Gallatin, a senior at Belmont University in Nashville.
Published: Monday, April 23, 2018 @ 1:25 AM
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A massive hunt to capture the man wanted in connection with the shooting deaths of four people at a Waffle House in Antioch, Tennessee, outside Nashville, continues.
Travis Reinking, 29, is now on the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation's Top 10 Most Wanted List, and law enforcement said he is armed, dangerous and hiding, WHBQ's Greg Coy reports.
Police said Reinking returned to his apartment after opening fire at the Waffle House. Reinking, who reportedly was nude at the time of the shooting, put on pants and then ran into the woods, police said.
Neighbor Johnny Green said another neighbor noticed Reinking and called police.
"My mom saw him," Green added. Coy asked, "What did she say about him?" "He just seemed weird," Green replied.
Police said they hope the rain and cooler temperatures will draw Reinking out of hiding. Police said Reinking's options are limited because the crime and social media attention have made him an international fugitive.
Published: Monday, April 23, 2018 @ 11:33 AM
— Now that the latest royal baby’s been born, what will his name be?
The royal parents, William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, may already know, but the rest of us don’t, yet.
At it will probably be a few days until they make the official royal proclamation, CNN reported.
Bookmakers say that the favorites for a boy were Arthur, Albert or James.
Albert could be a shoo-in because it would not only a tribute to Queen Victoria’s husband, Prince Albert, but also a way of honoring the royal newborn’s great grandfather and Queen Elizabeth II’s father. He was called Albert until he became king and took the reign name of King George VI, CNN and BBC reported.
Many believe, no matter what name is chosen, it will be traditional.
“George and Charlotte are very traditional, historic, English names,” royal commentator Kate Williams told CNN.
The new baby is fifth in line to the throne, behind his grandfather, Prince Charles, his father, Prince William, and even his brother and sister.
The queen may not have full final decision on the name, but she will be consulted, CNN reported. She will also bequeath a title on the royal baby.