There are two options available to Alabama Republicans that don’t require either voting for the Democrat or total moral nihilism.

1. Stay home.
2. Convince yourself that all eight of Moore’s accusers are lying, or at least that the ones alleging assault and an interest in 14-year-olds are, and pull the lever for Moore with a clear conscience.

Kay Ivey, the governor, wants door number three — there’s no reason to disbelieve Moore’s accusers, she allows, but the stakes are too high in Congress to do anything but vote for a Republican. It’s another “Flight 93 election,” as chance would have it. She’s telling you here flatly that she’d send someone to the Senate whom she has every reason to believe is a child molester and an attempted rapist because he’ll vote the right way on judges. That’s pure nihilism in the heart of the Bible Belt. As is this:

Billy Graham’s son and heir, pushing moral relativism to try to drag his friend Roy across the finish line in an election, never mind the grievous crimes he’s been accused of. Burn this party to the ground and salt the ashes.

And when you’re done with that, burn the Democratic Party to the ground too. “Feminist” Kate Harding:

It would feel good, momentarily, to see Franken resign and the Democratic governor of Minnesota, Mark Dayton, appoint a senator who has not (as far as we know) harmed women. If I believed for one second that Franken is the only Democrat in the Senate who has done something like this, with or without photographic evidence, I would see that as the best and most appropriate option. But in the world we actually live in, I’m betting that there will be more. And more after that. And they won’t all come from states with Democratic governors and a deep bench of progressive replacements. Some will, if ousted, have their successors chosen by Republicans.

In other words, if we set this precedent in the interest of demonstrating our party’s solidarity with harassed and abused women, we’re only going to drain the swamp of people who, however flawed, still regularly vote to protect women’s rights and freedoms. The legislative branch will remain chockablock with old, white Republican men who regard women chiefly as sex objects and unpaid housekeepers, and we’ll show them how staunchly Democrats oppose their misogynistic attitudes by handing them more power.

It’s Bill Clinton and Ted Kennedy redux. A man who votes the right way, particularly on abortion, has earned feminist indulgences which he can redeem for a longer stay in office. “Progress” in this case means Harding calling on Franken to serve out his term and not run again, but his vote is simply too important for him to step down now and set a precedent by which red-state Democrats credibly accused of misconduct would be forced to resign too. Think about that. If you want to spin for Franken, you could try arguing that he’s facing just one accuser and what he’s accused of isn’t egregious by the standards of, say, Harvey Weinstein. But Harding’s not doing that. She’s saying that Democrats whose misconduct hasn’t even been discovered yet need protecting too, especially if they hail from states whose governors would appoint a Republican successor for them. She wants Franken to hang in there to provide cover for Democratic pols whose own misbehavior might conceivably be far more offensive than his. Burn it to the ground. Salt the ashes.

America is in a bad place.