Alabama election: Winner Doug Jones says contest about 'dignity and respect' after beating Roy Moore to Senate

Democrat, 63, bests Donald Trump-backed rival accused of historic child sex abuse

Andrew Buncombe
Montgomery, Alabama
Wednesday 13 December 2017 08:01
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Doug Jones has won Alabama senate election

Surprise victor Doug Jones celebrated his result in Alabama win by telling supporters the “entire race has been about dignity and respect”.

The 63-year-old Democrat who stunned both Alabama and much of the country by defeating former judge Roy Moore - the first Democrat to win a senate seat in the deeply conservative state for 25 years - said he now wanted to find “common ground” with other politicians in Washington.

“I have always believed that the people of Alabama have more in common than divides us,” he emotionally told supporters at his campaign victory rally in the city of Birmingham.

“We have shown not just around the state of Alabama, but we have shown the country the way - that we can be unified.”

Celebrating the victory on the same day he marked his 25th wedding anniversary, Mr Jones said he felt overwhelmed by the result.

“Take this election from the great state of Alabama. Take this opportunity,” he said. “On a very personal level, I want to thank each of you for fulfilling a lifelong dream to serve in the US Senate.”

Earlier on Tuesday, President Donald Trump had mocked Mr Jones as he urged people to vote for Mr Moore. In the end, the President tweeted his support.

An attorney and former prosecutor, Jones rallied voters on a message of moving past the Moore controversies. He was buoyed by an influx of national Democratic cash and endorsements.

Jones' victory is set to narrow the slim Republican majority over Democrats in the Senate to 51-49. His win in the Republican stronghold energizes the Democratic Party as it looks to build on anti-Trump sentiment to mount a challenge next year to Republican control of Congress.

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