In response to the recent revelations
regarding Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore
, talk has turned to a rare bird of American politics, a sincere write-in effort. An effective write-in candidacy to the US Senate is hardly an impossibility. Some years back, Alaska
Senator Lisa Murkowski
-- now one of the Senate's leading centrists -- successfully waged such a bid after losing a Republican primary challenge in her state. Trump’s refusal to defend Moore telegraphs his preference for such an effort as well, though for which possible write-in candidate, it is not yet possible to tell.
In Alabama, three names dominate the discussion of such a potential effort. The first is Luther Strange, the incumbent appointee to that Senate seat, who lost the primary
for the seat to Moore. Strange was handicapped by the fact of his appointment by a scandal-plagued governor, who resigned shortly thereafter, and by his immediate cozying up to the hated Mitch McConnell, and the establishment Republican group. In the primary, Strange was endorsed by President Donald Trump
, but Moore was the more truly Trumpian
figure, a characteristic which carried the day with Alabama GOP primary voters. Thus, floated notion of writing in Strange has largely landed with a thud.
A second, and seemingly more palatable option to Alabama Republicans is current Alabama Congressman Mo Brooks
who similarly failed to advance in the primary -- not even making the run off -- but who thereafter endorsed Moore, and is certainly more ideologically akin to Moore.
The third option, one pitched by Mitch McConnell after the idea of writing in Strange failed to take off, is a write-in of Jeff Sessions
, the previous holder of the seat who's very act of vacating it to take the office of US Attorney General
necessitated the current special election. the hook for this proposal is that, since Sessions has recused himself from anything to do with investigation of Russian interference in the last presidential election, his return to the Senate would permit President Trump to appoint a new Attorney General who did not bear the burden of such a recusal, and would definitely be able to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller straightaway.
When an effort does materialize to carry forth such a campaign, it will probably arise swiftly and shortly before the election, with the intention of quickly raising popular support time to Crest with the vote itself. It might not even be an especially visible effort on the ground, carried out largely door-to-door, word-of-mouth, and via a deluge of robocalls recorded by figures such as the aforementioned Murkowski and McConnell, and others who have already repudiated Moore, including John McCain
, Mitt Romney
, John Kasich
, and quite possibly even Donald Trump himself.