Updated 6:45 p.m. | Alabama officials certified the special Senate election results Thursday, declaring Democrat Doug Jones the winner.
Jones is expected to be sworn into office on Jan. 3, his spokesman confirmed. He will be the first Democratic senator to represent Alabama in 25 years.
“I am looking forward to going to work for the people of Alabama in the new year,” said Jones said in a statement. “As I said on election night, our victory marks a new chapter for our state and the nation. I will be an independent voice and work to find common ground with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to get Washington back on track and fight to make our country a better place for all.”
Jones won the Dec. 12 special election by nearly 22,000 votes in the traditionally Republican state, a margin of 1.6 points. He beat Roy Moore, the controversial former state Supreme Court Chief Justice, who was accused of sexual misconduct with teenagers.
Moore has still not conceded the race and continues to argue that voter fraud was prevalent in the election. His campaign filed a lawsuit late Wednesday night, less than 24 hours before the election was to be certified, to delay certification.
Circuit Court Judge Johnny Hardwick denied Moore’s request to delay certification, according to Al.com.
Secretary of State John Merrill said Thursday the lawsuit would not change the results. He told Al.com there were 118 complaints of voter fraud in the Dec. 12 election. His office said 33 of those reports are still pending and no fraud was found in other 85 complaints.
But Moore and his team have insisted the election results are tainted. The complaint cited results in Jefferson County, where his lawyer wrote that turnout was “inexplicably substantially higher” than the rest of the state.
The complaint cited three “election fraud” experts who claimed it was statistically improbable that Moore would lose.
One of the experts, Richard Charnin, has written a book detailing “mathematical proof of a conspiracy” relating to President John F. Kennedy’s assassination, according to the book description. Another, John Condit, has alleged that Israel played a role in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, according to the Washington Post. The third, Philip Evans, has a degree in electrical engineering.
Moore included an affidavit in the lawsuit that he took a polygraph test after the election, which he said proved the sexual misconduct allegations were false. The affidavit did not include any details on the test, including questions or answers.
The Jones campaign filed a motion to dismiss Moore’s lawsuit, alleging it has “no basis in law.”
Jones spokesman Sam Coleman said in a statement about the lawsuit, “This desperate attempt by Roy Moore to subvert the will of the people will not succeed. The election is over, it’s time to move on.”
Correction: An earlier version misstated Jones’ margin of victory.