A fifth woman accused Roy S. Moore, the Republican Senate candidate in Alabama, on Monday of making sexual or romantic advances toward her when she was a teenager, as senior Republicans in Washington called for him to drop out of the race and threatened to expel him from the Senate if he wins.
The new accuser, Beverly Young Nelson, told a news conference in New York that Mr. Moore attacked her when she was 16 and he was a prosecutor in Etowah County, Ala. Ms. Nelson was represented at the news conference by Gloria Allred, a lawyer who has championed victims of sexual harassment.
“I tried fighting him off, while yelling at him to stop, but instead of stopping, he began squeezing my neck attempting to force my head onto his crotch,” Ms. Nelson said in a statement she issued at the news conference. She said Mr. Moore warned her that “no one will believe you” if she told anyone about the encounter in his car.
Hours earlier, Senator Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, said Mr. Moore “should step aside” and that he believes the women who have accused Mr. Moore of sexual misconduct when they were teenagers.
“I believe the women, yes,” Mr. McConnell said at a news conference in Louisville.
Mr. McConnell also said that encouraging a write-in candidate to run in the Dec. 12 special election is “an option we’re looking at.”
Senator Cory Gardner of Colorado, speaking in his role as chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, said that if Mr. Moore wins the special election on Dec. 12, he should be expelled from the Senate, “because he does not meet the ethical and moral requirements of the United States Senate.”
Mr. Moore, a judge who was twice removed from the state’s high court, first for refusing to remove the Ten Commandments from the Supreme Court grounds, then for refusing to accept gay marriage, responded defiantly. He showed no sign of leaving the race ahead of Alabama’s Dec. 12 special election date.
In an afternoon statement, Mr. Moore’s campaign described Ms. Allred as “a sensationalist leading a witch hunt, and she is only around to create a spectacle.” The statement, issued before Ms. Allred’s news conference in New York, denied again “any sexual misconduct with anyone” by Mr. Moore.
Republicans here and in Alabama have been up in arms over the accusations, published last week in The Washington Post, that Mr. Moore pursued sexual or romantic relationships with teenagers when he was in his 30s. The reports have upended a race in a state that has not elected a Democratic senator in 25 years.
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SOURCE: New York Times, Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Jonathan Martin