Jones: In 'gracious' call, Trump invited me to the White House

Sen.-elect Doug Jones (D-Ala.) said Wednesday that he had “a very gracious” phone call with President TrumpDonald John TrumpSenate advances public lands bill in late-night vote Warren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases Esper orders ‘After Action Review’ of National Guard’s role in protests MORE, in which the president invited him to visit the White House and congratulated his campaign’s victory.

“It was a very gracious call. I very much appreciate it. He congratulated me on the race that we won. He congratulated me and my staff on the manner in which we handled this campaign and went forward. And we talked about finding that common ground, to work together,” Jones said during a news conference in Alabama.

Jones said he also received phone calls from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellSenate advances public lands bill in late-night vote GOP senator to try to reverse requirement that Pentagon remove Confederate names from bases No, ‘blue states’ do not bail out ‘red states’ MORE (R-Ky.), Senator Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerOvernight Health Care: US showing signs of retreat in battle against COVID-19 | Regeneron begins clinical trials of potential coronavirus antibody treatment | CMS warns nursing homes against seizing residents’ stimulus checks Schumer requests briefing with White House coronavirus task force as cases rise Schumer on Trump’s tweet about 75-year-old protester: He ‘should go back to hiding in the bunker’ MORE (D-N.Y.), Sen. Richard ShelbyRichard Craig ShelbyHouse pushes back schedule to pass spending bills Top Republican says Trump greenlit budget fix for VA health care GOP senators not tested for coronavirus before lunch with Trump MORE (R-Ala.) and Sen. Luther StrangeLuther Johnson StrangeThe biggest political upsets of the decade State ‘certificate of need’ laws need to go GOP frets over nightmare scenario for Senate primaries MORE (R-Ala.), who is currently in the Senate seat as a special appointee.

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“All very gracious, congratulating us on the way we have run this race, the way we portrayed ourself and the campaign, and all expressing a desire to look forward together to try to work for the betterment of the state of Alabama and this country,” Jones said.

“To do as we have said from the very beginning of this campaign, to try to find common ground so that we can move forward.”

Jones said he has yet to hear from his Republican opponent Roy Moore, whom he defeated on Tuesday, becoming the first Democrat to win a Senate seat in Alabama in a quarter century.

The election dealt a blow to Trump, who endorsed Moore in the final weeks of the race and recorded a robocall for his campaign while many Republicans in Washington called for Moore to step out of the race. 

The president supported Moore despite numerous allegations of sexual misconduct against the Senate candidate, including that he had initiated sexual contact with a 14-year-old girl when he was in his 30s. Moore has denied allegations of inappropriate behavior.

Moore has yet to concede defeat to Jones, who led the Republican by more than 20,000 votes with all precincts reporting on Wednesday.

The senator-elect said he thinks the president believes Alabamians have spoken in casting their votes in the special election.

“And after elections, it’s a time for healing. It’s a time for reaching out. That’s what I intend to do once I can be sworn in,” Jones said.

“I think that as most people, including the president, believe that the people of Alabama spoke.”

Updated: 4:50 p.m. 

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