The Democratic candidate, Doug Jones, has won the just concluded Alabama senate election which he contested against Republican, Roy Moor.
The election was held to fill the seat vacated by Jeff Sessions, now the U.S. Attorney General.
It was the first Democratic Senate victory in a quarter-century in Alabama, one of the ‘reddest’ of red states, and proved anew that party loyalty does not guarantee victory.
The Republican loss was a major embarrassment for President Donald Trump.
Mr. Jones considered the result as a reflection of a unified country. The democrat could not but express his gratitude amidst cheers and tears of the state people.
In shock, Mr. Jones expressed “I think that I have been waiting all my life, and now I just don’t know what the hell to say.”
The victory by Mr. Jones, a former U.S. attorney best known for prosecuting two Ku Klux Klansmen responsible for Birmingham’s infamous 1963 church bombing, narrows the Grand Old Party -the Republicans- advantage in the U.S. Senate to 51-49.
That imperils already-uncertain Republican tax, budget and health proposals and injects tremendous energy into the Democratic Party’s early push to reclaim House and Senate majorities in 2018.
Some residents have termed the result as nothing but an embarrassment to President Trump and a wake-up call.
However, Roy Moore has refused to accept the defeat as he raised the possibility of a recount during a brief appearance at a somber campaign party in Montgomery.
“It’s not over,” Mr. Moore said. “We know that God is still in control.”
Still, many Washington Republicans viewed the defeat of Moore as perhaps the best outcome for the party nationally despite the short-term sting.
The fiery Christian conservative’s positions have alienated women, racial minorities, gays and Muslims — in addition to the multiple allegations that he was guilty of sexual misconduct with teens, one only 14, when he was in his 30s.
In a speech, John Merrill, Secretary of State of Alabama, shortly after the announcement of results affirmed the verifiability of the result.
Mr. Merrill declared, “The people of Alabama have spoken tonight. The most important thing to remember now is the process needs to be followed to ensure that the integrity, the safety and security of the election is preserved.”
The election will be certified no earlier than December 26 and no later than the January 3. If the margin is within 1 per cent, it triggers an automatic recount. So far, Mr. Jones is leading by more than that.
However, there are still votes to be counted, including absentee and military ballots.
Meanwhile, Mr. Trump tweeted a congratulatory message to Doug Jones quoting the victory as a hard fought one.
And on Wednesday afternoon, Mr. Trump said that he already knew that Roy Moore would not win.
“The reason I originally endorsed Luther Strange is that I said Roy Moore will not be able to win the general election. I was right! Roy worked hard but the deck was staged against him,” Mr. Trump said.
Virtually the entire Republican establishment, Mr. Trump included, supported Mr. Moore’s primary opponent, Luther Strange, in September.