W.H.’s Short: If Trump Didn’t Believe Moore Accusers Were Credible He’d Be Campaigning for Him
STEPHANOPOULOS: But I’m asking for the position of the president. Because the president also said he would back Roy Moore if he won the primary — if he won the runoff against Strange. And Roy Moore did, indeed, win that. And it’s now been two weeks since the allegations first broke. There are now seven women who have come forward. Here’s what the leaders you work with in congress are saying about that right now.
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REP. PAUL RYAN, (R) WISCONSIN: These allegations are credible. If he cares about the values and the people he claims to care about, then he should step aside.
SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL, (R) KENTUCKY: I believe the women, yes.
JEFF SESSIONS, ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES: I have no reason to doubt these young women.
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STEPHANOPOULOS: That’s the president’s attorney general right there.
Does the president have any reason to doubt these young women who are making the allegations?
SHORT: George, I think that the vice president as well spoke out against this when the allegations came forward, the president has expressed his concern about this. As you noted the president has not gone down to Alabama to campaign for Roy Moore since the primary concluded.
We have serious concerns about the allegations that have been made. But we also believe that all of this information is out there for the people of Alabama. Roy Moore has been a public servant for decades in Alabama. He has run multiple times. The people of Alabama know best what to do and the right decision to make here.
STEPHANOPOULOS: But they may, but I’m asking you a direct question on behalf of the president. You work for the president. Does the president believe the women or not?
SHORT: Obviously, George, if he did not believe that the women’s accusations were credible he would be down campaigning for Roy Moore. He has not done that. He has concerns about the accusations, but he is also concerned that these accusations are 38 years old. Roy Moore has been in public service for decades, and the accusations did not arise until a month before election.
So we are concerned about several aspects of the story. We are very concerned about the allegations. But at this point, as I’ve said, we think it’s best for the people of Alabama to make the decision for them.
STEPHANOPOULOS: So, you’re not willing to make a yes or no judgment on whether the president believes the women?
SHORT: I think I have answered your question three times now.
STEPHANOPOULOS: No. I think what you have said is you have said is you have questions and concerns about the allegations.
SHORT: We do. We do have serious questions about the allegations. And the president has raised those and it’s one of the reasons why he has not gone down to campaign for Roy Moore.