U.S. Press Freedom Tracker

Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore threatens to sue the Washington Post

Incident Details

REUTERS/Marvin Gentry

Roy Moore speaks as he participates in the Mid-Alabama Republican Club's Veterans Day Program in Vestavia Hills, Alabama, on November 11, 2017.

— REUTERS/Marvin Gentry
November 12, 2017

Roy Moore, the Republican candidate in Alabama's special election for Senate, said on Nov. 12, 2017, that he would sue The Washington Post, after the paper reported on his alleged sexual misconduct with minors.

“The Washington Post published another attack on my character and reputation because they are desperate to stop my political campaign,” Moore said during a campaign rally in Huntsville, Alabama. “These attacks said I was with a minor child and are false and untrue — and for which they will be sued.”

On Nov. 9, Moore’s campaign said in a statement that the Washington Post report— which was based on interviews with more than 30 people and quoted multiple women by name — was “the very definition of fake news and intentional defamation.”

Moore has not said when he intends to file a lawsuit against the Post.

Moore is not the first Republican politician to threaten a news organization with a frivolous defamation suit. President Donald Trump has repeatedly threatened to sue news organizations, including both the Post and The New York Times, in response to negative coverage.

The U.S. Press Freedom Tracker catalogues press freedom violations in the United States. Email tips to [email protected].