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In response to the Washington Post article about Republican Alabama U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore having relationships with teenage girls in the past, some articles surfaced accusing one of the women of having political motivations.
The conservative website Activist Mommy said that Deborah Wesson Gibson, who said Moore solicited dates from her when she was a teenager and he was in his 30s, has worked for national Democrats. The website also said that Gibson is supporting Doug Jones, the Democrat running against Moore in the Dec 12 special election. (Gibson told the Post that she was 17 when Moore asked her out on dates that did not progress beyond kissing.)
"Breaking! Roy Moore’s accuser worked for Democratic leaders and is actively campaigning for Moore’s opponent," states the headline Nov. 10. Facebook users flagged the post as being potentially misleading, as part of the social network’s efforts to combat fake news.
The Activist Mommy story states that Gibson "is not only a passionate progressive, but she has actually worked for the DNC and is actively campaigning for Moore’s opponent, Doug Jones. .... social media evidence makes clear that she is a fervent supporter of Jones and Democrats in general, and has even worked for the DNC."
The website states that Gibson is a sign language interpreter who has interpreted at rallies for former Vice President Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton.
We found more details in a report from the Alabama Media Group, AL.com, which stated that Gibson owns an interpreting company, Signs of Excellence, and linked to photos posted on its Facebook page showing her interpreting for Clinton as well as Biden.
Fox News showed additional photos on Signs of Excellence’s Facebook page that included Gibson interpreting for U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy’s 2016 Senate bid and appearing with U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, both Florida Democrats.
Reached at her Signs of Excellence business phone number in Florida on Nov. 13, Gibson declined to comment.
Democratic National Committee spokeswoman Sabrina Singh told PolitiFact that Gibson and her company never received payment from the DNC.
The Activist Mommy website shows only a little information linking Gibson to Jones, the Democrat running against Moore. But the information doesn’t show Gibson actively campaigning for him.
The site shows Gibson shared a Sept. 20 statement on Facebook by Jones’ campaign announcing that Biden would appear on his behalf.
"I was honored to interpret for Vice President Biden in the fall of 2012!" she wrote in a comment, including a photo of her alongside Biden.
The website also showed that she shared a story by New York Magazine stating that Democrats have a chance to beat Moore.
Gibson, a Delray Beach, Fla., resident, is a long-time registered Republican voter in Palm Beach County. She initially registered without any party affiliation in April 1995 and then switched her registration to Republican in December 1995, according to Susan Bucher, the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections. She has since remained registered as a Republican.
Gibson voted in the presidential preference primary in March 2016 and in the general election in November 2016.
We emailed the Activist Mommy, Elizabeth Johnston, and told her that we didn’t see evidence on her website that Gibson was actively campaigning for Jones. She did not provide additional evidence to bolster her claim.
Sebastian Kitchen, a spokesman for Jones’ campaign, told PolitiFact that Gibson has played no role in Jones’ campaign.
"Her name is nowhere in our volunteer database, we have no indication she ever contributed," he says. "We have no evidence whatsoever that she had anything to do with our campaign."
The Activist Mommy website states in a headline "Breaking! Roy Moore’s accuser worked for Democratic leaders and is actively campaigning for Moore’s opponent."
The website is referring to Deborah Wesson Gibson, who owns a sign language interpretation company. The company’s Facebook photos show that Gibson has interpreted speeches for Democrats including Hillary Clinton and Biden.
The website also states that Gibson worked for the DNC; however, a spokeswoman for the DNC says that it never paid Gibson or her firm.
The article’s evidence is weak to link Gibson to Jones. Two Facebook shares do not prove that Gibson is actively campaigning for Jones, and the campaign says she has played no role.
We rate this claim Mostly False.
Activist Mommy, "BREAKING! Roy Moore’s Accuser Worked for Democratic Leaders and Is Actively Campaigning for Moore’s Opponent," Nov. 10, 2017
Washington Post, "Woman says Roy Moore initiated sexual encounter when she was 14, he was 32," Nov. 9, 2019
Fox News, "Local media connect Roy Moore accuser to Democratic campaigns," Nov. 10, 2017
AL.com, "One of Roy Moore's accusers worked as interpreter for Hillary Clinton campaign," Nov. 10, 2017
Facebook, Signs of Excellence photos, Accessed Nov. 13, 2017
Red State, "A Tone Deaf Attempt At Discrediting One Of Roy Moore’s Accusers," Nov. 11, 2017
Interview, Sabrina Singh, Democratic National Committee spokeswoman, Nov. 13, 2017
Interview, Susan Bucher, Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections, Nov. 13, 2017
Interview, Elizabeth Johnston, Activist Mommy, Nov. 13, 2017
Interview, Sebastian Kitchen, spokesman for Doug Jones U.S. Senate campaign, Nov. 14, 2017
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