A Tale of Two Sex Scandal Denials: Judge Roy Moore vs Assemblyman Devon Mathis
Bombshell allegations were dropped on Judge Roy Moore today endangering his quest to become the next United States Senator from Alabama.
The liberal Washington Post published an article featuring a woman who claims that Moore initiated sexual encounters with her when she was just 14 years old. The alleged encounters occurred more than 30 years ago when Moore, then 32 years old, was an assistant district attorney.
The Washington Post, derisively referred to in some conservative circles as "Jeff Bezos' Blog," is a liberal publication that previously employed hack journalist Chris Cillizza. WaPo has endorsed Moore's opponent.
In the article, Leigh Corfman claims that Moore drove her out to his place and that they merely kissed and hugged on their first meeting. She claims that she told Moore she was only 14 that night.
On their second meeting he once again drove her out to his place. This time "he took off her shirt and pants and removed his clothes. He touched her over her bra and underpants, she says, and guided her hand to touch him over his underwear."
Three additional women claim that Moore pursued them when they were between the ages of 16 and 18. None of the four women had sexual intercourse nor do any of them claim that Moore forced them to do anything against their will.
However, the age of consent in Alabama was and still is 16 years of age. Assuming the allegations are true, Moore would have been guilty of committing misdemeanor sexual abuse in the second degree.
Judge Roy Moore and his campaign issued an immediate response that was forceful and emphatically denied the allegations.
Moore said the allegations were "completely false and a desperate political attack." The campaign further stated that "this garbage is the very definition of fake news and intentional defamation."
Contrast that with the response by California Assemblyman Devon Mathis (R-Visalia).
On October 19th, American Children First sent a letter to the Sacramento County District Attorney's Office requesting an investigation into allegations that Mathis sexually assaulted one of his staffers while she was unconscious.
There was no official denial by Mathis or his office until October 22 when Mathis released the following lukewarm response:
"While this is completely unsubstantiated allegations and purely false gossip from a male blogger. I believe it is critical that all women know if they are assaulted they will be taken seriously and protected. If that means I have a bad headline until this is proven false, I'm ok with that."
In an Associated Press article, Mathis spokeswoman Jennifer Jacobs said allegations against Mathis "will be proven false" and that "Devon's all right with a bad headline here or there if it means women feel like they're going to be taken seriously when they do have complaints."
Out of all the articles that have been published on the scandal so far, those are the only two denials issued for the public record. No press releases. No press conferences. No statements on Twitter or Facebook.
More than three weeks since the allegations were levied and many articles later, Assemblyman Mathis has refused to come out and publicly state that he did not sexually assault his staffer. Unless you consider calling the accusations "completely unsubstantiated allegations and purely false gossip from a male blogger" a forceful denial and proclamation of innocence.
If I was wrongly accused of sexual assault I would be shouting my innocence from the rooftops, repeatedly.
Unlike Judge Roy Moore who aggressively professed his innocence within hours of the bombshell, Assemblyman Devon Mathis opted to wait several days to prepare what was a lacking and tepid response.