WASHINGTON – Democrat Doug Jones won the Senate election in Alabama on Tuesday, defeating his Republican rival Roy Moore, who was accused of sexual abuse by eight women during the campaign.
With 93 percent of the ballots counted, the Democrat candidate had secured 602,515 votes, or about 49.6 percent, while Moore had garnered 592,729 votes, about 48.8 percent.
With Jones’ victory, the Republican Party is left with a slim 51-to-49 majority in the Senate.
Jones won the seat left vacant by Attorney General Jeff Sessions after he left to join the administration of US President Donald Trump.
The victory of the Democratic Party in the conservative state of Alabama is considered a major setback for Trump, who voiced his support for Moore despite the sexual abuse allegations against him.
Moore denied the allegations.
A year ago, Trump won the presidential elections in Alabama by about 28 percentage points over Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton.
On Twitter, Trump congratulated Jones for his “hard fought victory,” but regretted that there were more than 22,000 votes, or about 1.7 percent of the total, that the voters cast for candidates who did not participate in the Senate race through the “write-in” method.
“The people of Alabama are great, and the Republicans will have another shot at this seat in a very short period of time,” he added.