It was once called a long shot, but Democrat Doug Jones defeated his Republican opponent Roy Moore Tuesday to become the first Democratic senator to represent Alabama in two decades.
- GOP Roy Moore, accused of sexual misconduct, hints at possible recount
- President Donald Trump congratulates Democrat Doug Jones
- RELATED: Democrat Doug Jones wins Alabama Senate seat
It was a long election battle in not just the Yellowhammer State, but also for the nation, as many women came out to accuse Moore of being guilty of sexual harassment and assault while he was in his 30s and they were in their teens.
For Republicans, it divided the GOP, as many supported Moore, who says he is innocent of the accusations, and others who wanted him to step out of the race.
However, the controversy most likely helped Moore's opponent gain a victory that Democrats have not been able to obtain in 20 years.
"We have shown, not just around the state of Alabama, but we have shown the country the way. That we could be unified," declared Jones.
It is a stunning upset in a race the nation has been following for months and in the end Jones won over Moore in the Alabama Special Election for a key U.S. Senate seat.
During those months, Moore was hounded by multiple allegations that he was guilty of sexual misconduct with teens, one only 14, when he was in his 30s.
Moore did address his supporters late Tuesday night, but he has not officially conceded. Instead, he hinted at a recount.
"Realize when the vote is this close that it's not over. And we still got to go by the rules about this recount provision," he said.
However, the Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill talked about the clarity of the process and assured voters, noting it was "highly unlikely" Jones would not be certified as the winner of the race.
There have been more than three million tweets sent about Alabama and even President Donald Trump shared his congratulations in a tweet.
Congratulations to Doug Jones on a hard fought victory. The write-in votes played a very big factor, but a win is a win. The people of Alabama are great, and the Republicans will have another shot at this seat in a very short period of time. It never ends!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 13, 2017
However, on Wednesday morning, Trump tweeted that things were stacked against Moore.
The reason I originally endorsed Luther Strange (and his numbers went up mightily), is that I said Roy Moore will not be able to win the General Election. I was right! Roy worked hard but the deck was stacked against him!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 13, 2017
Other prominent Republicans, too, chimed in, including outspoken Republican Sen. Jeff Flake, as well as the Governor of Ohio, John Kasich.
Decency wins— Jeff Flake (@JeffFlake) December 13, 2017
Thankfully, today enough Republicans chose country over party. Tomorrow we must redouble our efforts to support candidates worthy of the office they seek.#TwoPaths— John Kasich (@JohnKasich) December 13, 2017
By 10:30 last night, Jones was already tweeting as well.
“On a very personal level, I want to thank each of you for fulfilling a lifelong dream to serve in the U.S Senate.— Doug Jones (@GDouglasJones) December 13, 2017
We have work to do in this state.
Thank you all, god bless you.”
Doug Jones, election night victory.#RightSideOfHistory pic.twitter.com/mpgFGAqofg
And then, he gave his victory speech.
"We have been in a crossroads in the past, and unfortunately we have usually taken the wrong fork. Tonight, ladies and gentlemen, you took the right road!" Jones announced
The victory by Jones, a former U.S. attorney best known for prosecuting two Ku Klux Klansmen responsible for Birmingham’s infamous 1963 church bombing, narrows the GOP advantage in the U.S. Senate to 51-49.
That imperils already-uncertain Republican tax, budget and health proposals and injects tremendous energy into the Democratic Party’s early push to reclaim House and Senate majorities in 2018.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.