Not Real News: Alabama Senate race spurs false reports

National / World
Roy Moore_489616

FILE- In this Dec. 5, 2017, file photo, former Alabama Chief Justice and U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore speaks at a campaign rally in Fairhope Ala. As Alabama’s high-profile Senate race heads toward a Tuesday vote, supporters and opponents Moore are bending the truth, or shattering it to pieces, in the campaign’s final stretch. (AP […]

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — As Alabama’s high-profile Senate race heads toward a Tuesday vote, supporters and opponents of GOP candidate Roy Moore are bending the truth — or shattering it to pieces — in the campaign’s final stretch.

One website falsely proclaimed that one of the women who accused Moore of sexual misconduct had recanted. Another erroneously reported that a Moore accuser “forged” his yearbook inscription to her. On the other side, Moore’s detractors took to social media to assert, erroneously, that Moore had written in a 2011 textbook that women shouldn’t hold elected office.

The Associated Press checked these out; here are the real facts:


NOT REAL: BREAKING: Roy Moore’s accuser arrested and charged with falsification

THE FACTS: A story published by a satire site called NoFakeNewsOnline and many others reported that Alabama Attorney General John Simmons filed misdemeanor charges of falsification against Mary Lynne Davies for accusing Moore of assaulting her. John Simmons is not the state’s attorney general, Steve Marshall is; and Mary Lynne Davies is not among the eight women who have publicly accused Moore of misconduct. Alabama’s online court system has no record of charges against someone by that name. The story was published just as Moore accuser Beverly Nelson acknowledged adding two notations to a yearbook inscription she says Moore wrote to her in 1977.


NOT REAL: BREAKING: Roy Moore’s Lying Accuser Admits He Didn’t Ever Touch Her

THE FACTS: None of the women who accused the Alabama Republican Senate candidate of sexual misconduct, including two women who said Moore molested them, have backed off their initial claims. This fake headline is from a website, Reagan Was Right, which promotes hoaxes and satire. The woman featured in a photograph accompanying the story shows a British reality TV star, not any of the eight women who have accused Moore of sexual misconduct.


NOT REAL: Moore Co-Authored Textbook that Said Women Can’t Hold Public Office

THE FACTS: Moore is in fact a co-author of a “textbook” which serves as a study guide for a series of Bible-based video and audio lectures on U.S. law and public policy. The course packaging also identifies him as a “featured speaker.” Despite claims spread on the web this week, however, Moore did not author the specific section or deliver the lecture that argues that women should not hold elected office. That talk was given by William Einwechter, an elder at Immanuel Free Reformed Church in Pennsylvania. Moore’s office says he does not believe that women are unqualified for public office.



THE FACTS: Moore supporters celebrated misleading news that Beverly Nelson, one of his accusers, admitted forging a 1977 yearbook inscription that was considered key evidence against the Alabama Republican. The inscription reads, “To a sweeter more beautiful girl I could not say, ‘Merry Christmas.'” It is followed by the signature “Roy Moore D.A.” and the notation “12-22-77 Olde Hickory House.” Nelson’s attorney, Gloria Allred, said Friday that Nelson had added the date and restaurant name to the inscription. However, Allred also said that a handwriting expert found Moore’s signature in the yearbook to be authentic.


Associated Press writer Michael Rubinkam contributed to this report.


This is part of The Associated Press’ ongoing effort to fact-check misinformation that is shared widely online, including work with Facebook to identify and reduce the circulation of false stories on the platform.


Find all AP Fact Checks here:

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