Alabama congresswoman who disavowed Trump in 2016 forced into runoff
Posted June 5, 2018 10:42 p.m. EDT
WASHINGTON (CNN) — The Alabama congresswoman who un-endorsed Donald Trump in 2016 when the "Access Hollywood" tape went public will face a runoff election, CNN projects.
Republican Rep. Martha Roby will face a July runoff to save her seat after failing to top 50% in Tuesday's primary. Roby will face Bobby Bright -- a former Democratic congressman who is now running as a Republican.
Roby fell short of 50% in part because she is paying a price in deep-red Alabama for saying in 2016 that she would not vote for Trump.
"I cannot look my children in the eye and justify a vote for a man who promotes and boasts about sexually assaulting women," she said at the time.
Bright accused Roby during the primary of turning her back on Trump at a crucial time.
If Roby were to lose the runoff, she would be the second House Republican defeated in a 2018 primary. Rep. Robert Pittenger of North Carolina lost to former pastor Mark Harris in May.
Among the candidates in the race against Roby were Rich Hobson, who managed Roy Moore's failed Senate campaign in late 2017, and state Rep. Barry Moore. Their presence in the race played a role in keeping Roby and Bright well short of the 50% mark.
First elected in 2010, Roby faced a closer-than-expected general election challenge in 2016 when she held off Democrat Nathan Mathis, 49% to 41%, with a large share of the remaining vote going to a local tea party write-in candidate.