President Trump stumped for Alabama’s Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore during a packed rally in nearby Pensacola, Fla., last night, where he said the GOP needs the controversial former judge to keep its “Make American Great Again” agenda on track.

“We want jobs, jobs, jobs, so get out and vote for Roy Moore,” Trump said about 30 miles from Florida’s state line with Alabama, where voters Tuesday will choose between Moore or Democrat former prosecutor Doug Jones.

A flurry of sexual misconduct allegations against Moore from nine women has resulted in a tight race leading up to Election Day. The allegations, which Moore has denied, date back decades to when Moore was a prosecutor in his 30s and the women were in their teens.

The White House has said it finds the allegations against Moore to be “troubling and concerning” and that they should be taken seriously.

But it has also said Moore’s denials should be taken into account.

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While many in the GOP, including Trump, initially distanced themselves from Moore, Trump gave the candidate a full-throated endorsement yesterday — one the White House said was based on “the issues.”

“The future of this country cannot afford to lose a seat in the very, very close U.S. Senate,” said Trump, referring to the GOP’s thin 52-48 margin.

“We can’t afford to have a liberal Democrat who is completely controlled by Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer,” Trump said. “We can’t do it. His name is Jones and he’s their total puppet.

“He will never, never vote for us,” Trump added. “We need someone in that seat who will vote for our ‘Make American Great Again’ agenda, which involves tough on crime, strong borders, strong immigration.”

Trump also showered Democrats with insults, calling them “soft on crime” and insisting they want to “suffocate our economy with socialist style regulations” and “raise your taxes through the sky.”

“They don’t want to vote for our tax cuts,” Trump said. “They want tax increases.”

Yesterday’s campaign rally was Trump’s first since September, when he went to Alabama to campaign for Sen. Luther Strange, who lost to Moore in the GOP runoff election.

The White House said the rally was a campaign event for Trump. But the location — so close to the Alabama state line and feeding its television markets — stoked speculation that it was a backdoor way for the president to boost Moore’s campaign without actually setting foot in the state.

Herald wire services contributed to this report.

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(c)2017 the Boston Herald

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