Pastor Mark Burns, who sits on Donald Trump’s evangelical advisory board, thinks it is time to "investigate" the women who say Roy Moore pursued and assaulted them.
With even more accusers coming forward with tales of Roy Moore terrorizing underage girls — even calling the school of one girl who refused to give him his number — many in the national party have abandoned him, but some Republicans are still circling the wagons.
Mark Burns, known as as Donald Trump's "top pastor," who now sits on the White House’s evangelical advisory board, is one such holdout defender of Moore.
During an appearance on MSNBC, Burns echoed Moore, who last week claimed to be investigating his accusers, by also directly attacking those who have come forward:
We have to look at the possibility of this simply being just a character assassination. Why wait so long? And I think it’s a dangerous place that when we allow anyone to just say anything, especially something that’s old as 40 years, when there was plenty of opportunity for Beverly Nelson and the other accusers to come out against Roy Moore, if these allegations were true — I’m saying, let’s investigate them, just like we investigated Roy Moore, we should be investigating the accusers, so that we know, is this true, is this false, is this real, or is this just an opportunity to, you know, to be used as a political pawn? That’s dangerous in American politics.
The question of why survivors of sexual abuse wait so long before coming forward with stories has been picked over many times. Often women fear retaliation — as Moore and his supporters are now threatening to do — or they simply do not feel there are people or systems that will support them when they come forward.
Republicans did not seem to have a problem understanding this when it was Hollywood power broker Harvey Weinstein in the hot seat.
Furthermore, "investigating the accusers" is completely irrelevant. Nine women have come forward so far with stories about Moore. Residents of his community have shared stories of Moore cruising the mall — from which he was banned — to prey on teenagers. His predatory behavior was "common knowledge," according to residents of Gadsen, Alabama.
Investigations of the growing list of his alleged victims changes none of that. Such threats serve only to to try to intimidate other women who might come forward with their own stories. Thus far, despite the best efforts of Moore and his supporters, it isn't working.