Democrat wins US Senate seat in Alabama in setback for Trump

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As CNN's Amanda Carpenter and Anderson Cooper noted in a panel discussing live election returns in the special Alabama Senate election, Moore appears to be taking a page from the "Trump playbook" that spun refusal to resign amid allegations of sexual harassment into success among conspiracy-hungry right-wingers.

The victory by Jones, a former U.S. attorney best known for prosecuting two Ku Klux Klansmen responsible for Birmingham's infamous 1963 church bombing, narrows the GOP advantage in the U.S. Senate to 51-49. Richard Shelby. But Trump lent his name and the national GOP's resources to Moore's campaign in recent days. Cory Booker, D-N.J., who campaigned for Jones in Alabama, suggested the victory could "elevate" a fractious Senate.

It's also not impossible that Jones, who distanced himself from national Democrats as he campaigned, could at times side with Republicans, given that he represents a deeply red state.

Jones' election is a significant - and improbable - blow to the GOP, which will now have just a one seat advantage in the Senate. Republican appointee Luther Strange has held the seat in the interim.

Moore is facing off against Democrat Doug Jones. They never banked on winning this Alabama seat - but desperately needed it. Defecting Republicans defeated legislation repealing Obamacare.

Democrat wins US Senate seat in Alabama in setback for Trump
Democrat wins US Senate seat in Alabama in setback for Trump

House and Senate Republicans are trying to hammer out the details on a sweeping tax plan with the goal of delivering it to the White House for Trump's signature by Christmas. The party should look to be competitive even in an uphill race.

Of course, Democrats didn't win a typical election. The misconduct allegations weighed down the race, especially with Congress and the entire country in the middle of a painful reckoning with sexual harassment and abuse.

More detailed polling data will reveal whether dissatisfaction with Moore depressed turnout or prompted enough people to cast write-in ballots, or if enthusiasm for Jones helped to determine the final outcome.

Fewer than one in 10 Republicans crossed party lines to vote for Doug Jones, but Jones has a slight edge among independents.

Gwen Moore tweeted that "another Roy Moore supporter" had called her office pretending to be an AP reporter and "started screaming and called me and my staff the n-word and other racial slurs" when the caller's cover was blown.

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